At the CIS Oil and Gas Summit which is being held in London a question has been addressed to Victor Kaluzhni, Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, one of the key speakers of the first day of the Summit, about the reasons for Ventspils’ underloading with Russian export crude oil.
“The issue is not a new one and is rooted in faulty practice of the years 90s, V. Kaluzhni said, when not only Latvia, but also several newly formed independent countries simultaneously and unreasonably boosted tariffs for transshipment or pumping of Russian oil. We all remember the atmosphere in which all that happened: for example, Ukraine tripled prices for transit services, and Baltic countries did the same on a unilateral basis. An anomalous situation was created as the result, when someone pulled chestnuts out of the fire and someone else made money on it.”
“In my opinion, V. Kaluzhni continued, it is time for the Latvian Government to sit down to the negotiating table for serious talks as regards Ventspils. Measures to settle the situation can be more rigorous or less rigorous; however in some way or other it is necessary to bring round the most intractable people inclining them to more reasonable and, what is more, inevitable compromises. This is what should be done instead of arguing against putting on the agenda the issue that ripened a long time ago”.