Russian fuel export ban to be lifted next week

Russia, the world's top seaborne exporter of diesel, introduced a ban on fuel exports on Sept 21 to tackle high domestic prices and shortages

Reuters
Published : 10 Nov 2023, 02:45 AM
Updated : 10 Nov 2023, 02:45 AM

Russian fuel producers have been told by the government to prepare for the scrapping of all remaining restrictions on the export of diesel and gasoline, three industry sources told Reuters on Thursday.

Russia, the world's top seaborne exporter of diesel, introduced a ban on fuel exports on Sept 21 to tackle high domestic prices and shortages.

The government eased restrictions on Oct 6, allowing the export of diesel by pipeline, but kept measures on gasoline exports in place. Overseas supplies of gasoline by trucks and railways are also prohibited.

Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov on Wednesday said that Russia was considering lifting the export ban on some grades of gasoline.

"They told the producers that exports will be opened up from next week," said a Russian oil company source who spoke on condition of anonymity owing to the sensitivity of such decisions.

Another industry source said the ban would be lifted next week.

"They promised to lift the exports ban next week. In regards to this promise, we have formed an export schedule and a plan for refining," said the source, who also spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Russian energy ministry did not immediately reply to a request for comment.

Diesel is Russia's biggest oil product export, at about 35 million metric tons last year. Almost three quarters of that was transported via pipeline. Russia also exported 4.8 million tons of gasoline in 2022.

Another company source said that a gasoline glut had emerged because of the restrictions.

"It's a low season now; we can't sell so much on the domestic market," he said.

Officials have said the ban would be lifted once the domestic market stabilises. Analysts had expected the restrictions to be scrapped after completion of the recent grain harvesting season.

Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak on Sunday said that Russia would continue an additional voluntary supply cut of 300,000 barrels per day from its crude oil and petroleum product exports until the end of December, as previously announced.