Germany’s opposition wants key refinery to keep using Russian oil: report

Politicians with Germany’s opposition CDU party have said that the country’s PCK Schwedt refinery should continue to process Russian oil, despite the Kremlin’s campaign of terror and aggression against Ukraine, according to reports.

PCK Schwedt.

PCK Schwedt.Photo: Wikimedia Commons

PCK Schwedt, which is majority-owned by the Russian energy giant Rosneft, processes between 10 and 11 million tonnes of oil per year, Poland’s bizensalert.pl website reported on Thursday. 

The facility supplies 90 percent of fuel for Berlin, according to the Reuters news agency. 

So far, PCK Schwedt has imported oil from Russia, through the Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline, but with the European Union embargo on Russian crude set to take effect as of the new year, this option will no longer be available, biznesalert.pl said. 

Securing supplies after ban on Russian oil 

Instead, some 5 million to 6 million tonnes of oil is due to be delivered through the German port of Rostock; the remaining amount is due to be supplied from Kazakhstan via the oil terminal in Poland’s northern port city of Gdańsk, according to the German government’s commissioner responsible for PCK Schwedt, Michael Kellner, biznesalert.pl reported. 

However, negotiations with these potential partners have stalled, the Polish website said. 

Poland wants Rosneft to be stripped of its stake in PCK Schwedt over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but the German government disagrees, according to biznesalert.pl.

Meanwhile, it is not clear why talks with Kazakhstan have not yet produced agreement, but one of the main problems is the lack of an adequate pipeline that does not run through Russia, biznesalert.pl reported.

’Lack of political will’

Jens Spahn, a popular politician who leads the CDU’s Bundestag group, has told the Märkische Oderzeitung newspaper that if the German government is unable to secure an alternative to Russian oil, the EU embargo cannot be implemented in the country, according to biznesalert.pl.

Spahn added, as quoted by biznesalert.pl: “I’m disappointed with the lack of political will on the part of the government.”

Local CDU politicians, including Karina Dörk, who leads the county government, have long demanded that PCK Schwedt continue to use Russian oil regardless of the terror and aggression that Russia has been unleashing on Ukraine, the Polish website reported.  

Last Thursday, Germany’s Economy Ministry said the government in Berlin expected to reach a decision the following week on how the Schwedt refinery will be supplied after the ban on Russian oil comes into force, the Reuters news agency reported.

(pm/gs)

Source: biznesalert.pl, Reuters 

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