15 Mar 2019 09:28

Regulator finds in favor of Rosneft in dispute with Lukoil over rates at Varandei Terminal

MOSCOW. March 15 (Interfax) - Russia's Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) has made a decision in favour of Rosneft in a dispute with Lukoil over oil handling rates at the latter's Varandei Terminal in the Arctic.

"FAS of Russia has found Varandei Terminal LLC in violation of the law on protection of competition," the regulator's press service told Interfax.

FAS did not say when the decision was made, or for what period the terminal will have to change its rates and by how much.

"Rosneft is satisfied with the decision of the Federal Antimonopoly Service recognizing the fact of the Lukoil Group company's abuse of its dominant position at the Port of Varandei. Our arguments were heard. FAS stated that the Lukoil Group company set and for several years maintained a monopolistically high, economically unjustified price for oil handling services at the Port of Varandei that exceeded average market indicators by many times," Rosneft said.

"And it is important to note that Lukoil has fully recouped its investments in the construction of the Arctic terminal at Varandei but continues to reap excess profit from its monopoly position at the expense of hurting the interests of consumers, foremost Bashneft-Polyus LLC," Rosneft said.

Lukoil, meanwhile, said it had not yet received the official ruling from the regulator. "In connection with information that has appeared in the media about a decision issued by FAS of Russia in regard to Varandei Terminal LLC concerning the setting of prices for oil handling services it provides, the press service of PJSC Lukoil reports that Lukoil Group organizations have not received official documents about this from the antimonopoly agency," Lukoil said.

"According to our information, the proceedings on this case were of a closed nature, so their results are not subject to disclosure. If FAS of Russia makes an official decision, options will be considered for further actions to protect the rights and legal interests of Lukoil Group within the bounds of current legislation," the company said.