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14 Jan 2020

No need to tweak Belarus budget due to situation with Russian oil

No need to tweak Belarus budget due to situation with Russian oil

MINSK, 14 January (BelTA) – There is no need to tweak the state budget in Belarus due to the situation with Russian oil, BelTA learned from Belarusian Finance Minister Maksim Yermolovich on 14 January.

When asked whether the situation with Russian oil deliveries has affected Belarus’ budget, the official said: “We are working in line with the approved budget. There is no need for any emergency tweaks.”

In his words, the lack of revenues from export duties on crude oil extracted in Belarus is how the situation affects the state budget. The finance minister pointed out it is too early to talk about changes in annual revenue figures. “We are working as usual. We are not making any decisions to accommodate the new terms of oil deliveries [from the Russian Federation],” Maksim Yermolovich noted.

The finance minister added that the execution of last year’s budget left a larger surplus than expected. “This is why we are rather well-prepared for this year’s budget. Last year we prepared very well for any risks including those relating to the execution of the budget and the work of the oil and gas industry,” he concluded.

BelTA reported earlier that on 1 January 2020 Russia stopped delivering oil to Belarus since the two countries had failed to agree on terms of this year’s deliveries. The Belarusian oil refineries (Mozyr Oil Refinery and OAO Naftan) reduced their workload to the minimum the technology allows. Representatives of the Belarusian state petrochemical concern Belneftekhim stated the concern is ready to fully meet the domestic demand for motor fuel. On 4 January Belneftekhim said an agreement had been reached with the Russian Federation on delivering the first batch of oil at a price without premium.

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