6 Oct 2023 16:35

Russian govt preparing another increase in exchange sales standards; gasoline to 15%, diesel fuel to 12.5% - sources

MOSCOW. Oct 6 (Interfax) - The Russian government is flexing out another increase in the standards for sales of petroleum products on the St. Petersburg International Mercantile Exchange (SPIMEX) for gasoline from the current 13% of production to 15%, and from the current 9.5% to 12.5% output for diesel fuel, as a number of sources reported to Interfax.

According to Interfax's sources, this measure has been supported at one of the last meetings with Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak. Currently, the Federal Anti-monopoly Service (FAS) is preparing a corresponding government resolution. Interfax has sent a request to the FAS.

At a recent meeting in the Federation Council, Elena Tsyshevskaya, head of the department for regulation of the fuel and energy complex and the chemical industry of the Federal Antimonopoly Service, stated: on average, in order for the price to be kept in acceptable conditions on the exchange segment, at least 20% [of production] must be sold. "We believe that for gasoline the minimum standard should be 15% and higher, for diesel - preferably about the same, maybe at the level of 13%-14%," they said.

Interfax's sources say that raising standards is among the comprehensive measures that departments and oil workers are currently developing in order to ensure a stable situation in the domestic fuel market.

The sources also note that the departments and oil companies have actually agreed on a mechanism for gradually lifting the ban on fuel exports - subject to a number of conditions. It is expected that the export ban will be lifted only for fuel producers, and pipeline supplies of diesel fuel will be allowed. According to sources, it is expected that the partial export ban may be lifted "today or tomorrow"; they expect the publication of a government decree in this regard in the very near future.

On Thursday, Chairman of the State Duma Committee of the Russian Federation Pavel Zavalny told reporters that the Russian government is discussing short-term and long-term measures to regulate the domestic fuel market. According to him, at a meeting with Novak on Wednesday, they discussed "a ban on export supplies of fuel purchased on the exchange, suppression of speculation in exchange trading, such as resale of previously purchased volumes, a direct increase in the share of fuel sold on the exchange, returning the damper to its original indicators and other".

Earlier, the government press service reported that departments and oil companies agreed to the introduction of protective duties for a number of fuel exporters from the Russian Federation. Such measures will preserve exports only to bona fide producers and close opportunities for gray exports.

Meanwhile, the FAS sent a letter to oil workers and independent gas stations about the need to reduce fuel prices. As the service explains, the reduction in prices at gas stations should occur due to a decrease in the cost of fuel on the stock exchange. The agency is waiting for reporting information from oil companies and independent gas stations on the measures taken. "In the absence of measures taken by organizations, the service will consider them as signs of violation of antimonopoly legislation," the FAS press release stated.

The ban on the export of gasoline and diesel fuel from Russia was introduced on September 21. It became a drastic measure taken to stabilize prices for petroleum products on the domestic market. Currently, a set of systemic measures is being developed to ensure that the fuel industry of the Russian Federation as a whole can function stably.