Russia’s well-being very much depends on oil money, but Russia has been forced out of many oil markets.
We are about to lose Caspian oil, oil perspectives of Chechnya are vague, Georgia has its own plans of constructing oil pipeline to Europe around Russia. We have the only “window to Europe” left – the Baltic area.
We need the Baltic. We lost too much pipelines in the last 10-15 years. For this reason, the information on Tatneft oil company plans to construct oil terminals in town Svetly of Kaliningrad region, correspond with the best geo-political interests of Russia.
Recently Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his address that Russia would be unable to develop solid foundation for hi-tech industry without exporting oil… If Tatneft starts its project, it will work for Russia’s future. Currently the majority of Russian oil is exported through the Baltic states, and Russia pays much money for transporting oil to them.
Of course, there are other options to transport Russian oil, for example by sea from Murmansk or Arkhangelsk, but using terminal in Kaliningrad region is cheaper and safer. Currently Russian oil is exported via Kaliningrad region as well, but the terminal will allow to expand the export significantly.
PRAVDA.Ru interviewed Tatneft company on its operations in Kaliningrad region. Tatneft started working in the region in December, 2001 by transporting diesel oil by using Russian Navy base capacities. Tatneft operator, BaltTerminalService company conducted reconstruction of the equipment of the nave base, and this allowed to ship up to 75,000 ton of diesel oil per month. Cooperation with Tatneft made profit of $3 million to Russian Baltic Fleet, this is more than 30 percent of all the money the entire Russian Navy could earn by commercial activity.
However, the current capacities do not allow to increase oil export as there is not enough storing room, limited capacities of the railway station in the town of Baltiisk.
Before constructing oil terminal, Tatneft company is going to arrange public ecological hearing with participation of the residents of town Svetly to listen people’s opinion and comments on the project. The public hearing is scheduled for July.