RUSSIA MAY REDIRECT
The Russian oil pipeline company Transneft is ready to redirect Europe-bound oil exports away from the Ukraine transit route, Transneft spokesman Igor Dyomin said on Friday.
Transneft made the statement after Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk announced earlier on Friday that Ukraine considered imposing a series of sanctions against Russia that could include a ban on air flights and the transit of energy products across its territory.
Transneft's oil supplies via Ukraine can be rechanneled into the northern stretch of the Druzhba oil pipeline and the port of Ust-Luga in northwest Russia, the company's spokesman said.
This year, Russia's oil exports to Slovakia, Hungary and the Czech Republic via Ukraine were expected at 14 million tons.
Transneft earlier said it could re-channel oil supplies through Russian ports, primarily via the Druzhba pipeline's northern section and the port of Ust-Luga to the Mediterranean ports of Trieste and Omisalj. Transneft could also use oil swap deals but a route change would slightly push up the cost of oil deliveries, the company said at the time.
The Transneft spokesman added that a change in the oil delivery route would increase the cost of oil supplies for European consumers.
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