Bosnias Deficit in Oil Import Reaches EUR 226.67 Million

26. Juni 2006, 00:00

In the first five months of this year, Bosnia and Herzegovina imported oil derivatives worth EUR 226.67 million (BAM...

In the first five months of this year, Bosnia and Herzegovina imported oil derivatives worth EUR 226.67 million (BAM 442 million), out of which products worth EUR 146.15 million (BAM 285 million) came from Croatia, or through Croatia.

According to data of the Bosnian Foreign Trade Chamber (VTKBiH), Croatian INA and Hungarian MOL are still dominant in the Bosnian oil market.

Croatia ranks first among the countries that sell oil derivatives in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with 264,000 tonnes of oil derivatives sold in the first five months this year.

Croatia sold 54.32 per cent of these products from its own refineries, while it imported the rest from Romania and Bulgaria and then sold it in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Slovenia ranks second and its company Petrol covers 13.1 per cent of the Bosnian oil market. In the first five months of this year, Petrol exported to Bosnia and Herzegovina oil derivatives worth EUR 29.74 million (BAM 58 million).

Hungary ranks third with a market share of 7.3 per cent and oil export worth EUR 16.41 (BAM 32 million) in the first five months this year.

The rest of oil derivatives were imported from Serbia (5.95 per cent) and Austria (4.82 per cent).

Bosnia and Herzegovina is the main export market for MOL and INA, and these companies were often singled out for taking interest in seeing the Bosanski Brod oil refinery in Republika Srpska out of work.

The import of oil derivatives from Croatia has been recording growth ever since August 2005, when the Bosanski Brod refinery ceased working due to lack of crude oil.

As of lately, Bosnia and Herzegovina has also been importing oil derivatives manufactured in Romania and Bulgaria, but through oil companies from neighbouring countries.

Only last year, Bosnia and Herzegovina imported oil derivatives worth EUR 90.26 million (BAM 176 million) in this way. It is expected that this sum will reach the amount of EUR 179.49 million (BAM 350 million) by the end of the year.

“It is evident that our oil market is controlled by several big companies from neighbouring countries,” said Petar Milanovic, vice president of VTKBiH. “The facts about the import from Romania and Bulgaria speak of how strong this trading lobby is.”

Milanovic noted that it is possible that this oil lobby influenced earlier problems regarding the sale of oil derivatives manufactured in the Bosanski Brod refinery in the Muslim-Croat Federation. He underlined that the state has to protect domestic oil production.

On Tuesday, the Republika Srpska government will lauch the final negotiations with several foreign companies on the sale of the Bosanski Brod refinery, oil retailer Petrol and the Modrica oil refinery, said Milan Jelic, Republika Srpskas minister of economy, development and energy.

Jelic added that the name of the buyer will be known on Thursday.

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