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Factbox-Russia's gasoline export ban

Published 27/02/2024, 12:50
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Fuga Bluemarine crude oil tanker lies at anchor near the terminal Kozmino in Nakhodka Bay near the port city of Nakhodka, Russia, December 4, 2022. REUTERS/Tatiana Meel/File Photo/File Photo
GPR
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MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia has announced a six-month ban on gasoline exports from March 1 to guarantee enough fuel to satisfy domestic demand ahead of planned maintenance work on refineries.

Exports to member states of the Eurasian Economic Union, as well as Mongolia, Uzbekistan and two Russian-backed breakaway regions of Georgia - South Ossetia and Abkhazia - are exempt.

WHY AN EXPORT BAN?

Russia's energy ministry expects "zero growth" of gasoline and diesel retail prices for at least the next two months.

The gasoline exports ban should prevent an increase in gasoline prices on the domestic market ahead of seasonal maintenance at refineries and amid rising demand from farmers and the summer driving season.

Last year, Russia banned gasoline exports between Sept.21 and Nov.17 to stem rising prices on its domestic market.

PRICE PRESSURES

Several Russian refineries have recently been affected by drone attacks or unplanned maintenance work, including one of the biggest gasoline producers - Lukoil's NORSI oil refinery in Nizhny Novgorod - leading to lower fuel production.

Wholesale fuel prices in Russia have risen since the start of the year. According to Feb. 22 prices on the St Petersburg international mercantile exchange (SPIMEX), 92-octane gasoline had risen by 21.3% since Jan 1, while 95-octane gasoline was up by 30.4%.

WILL INTERNATIONAL MARKETS BE AFFECTED?

Since a full EU embargo took effect in February 2023, Russia has diverted its gasoline supplies mostly to African countries, replacing Northwest European supplies.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Fuga Bluemarine crude oil tanker lies at anchor near the terminal Kozmino in Nakhodka Bay near the port city of Nakhodka, Russia, December 4, 2022. REUTERS/Tatiana Meel/File Photo/File Photo

In 2023, Russia produced in total 43.9 million tons of gasoline and exported about 5.76 million tons, or around 13% of its production.

The removal of Russian supplies from international markets as a result of the export ban could mean the resumption of European fuel supplies and increasing Chinese exports.

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