On September 22, President of Transneft S.M. Vainshtock answered a number of questions asked by the journalists.
He particularly mentioned that the oil producers were not making full use of potential capacity of Transneft’s export directions, and that Transneft’s throughput capacity surpasses by 400 ths tons the potential oil intake from producers. The Port of Primorsk alone was underused 335 ths t of oil. The August applications for Primorsk made 4.2 mln t, while 3.8 mln t were actually pumped. The similar situation is seen on other export directions.
Answering questions about Transenft’s relationship with Yukos, S.M. Vainshtock said Yukos would pay with oil for services provided, some 400 ths t monthly, depending on the market prices. Transneft, in its turn, will sale these volumes on the domestic market.
As for Transneft’s cooperation with Gazprom and Rosneft united company, S.M. Vainshtock said: “Nothing will change. Today we have very good relations with both Rosneft and Gazprom. We are going to work with the united structures in the same fashion.”
Answering questions about the tariffs, S.M. Vainshtock said he expected that, in 2005, the growth of tariffs for Company’s oil transportation services would not exceed the inflation rates. Transneft is going to file an application for tariffs increase at year-end, when deflator figures for 2004 will be known and those forecasted for 2005.
Touching upon strategic project financing, Company’s President said that credits appear to be more attractive than the bonds. According to him, today Transneft is the only holder of sovereign rating assigned by Moody’s rating agency, and according to expectations, Transneft will be able to attract credits on better conditions.
As earlier reported, Transenft reckons upon signing the governmental decision on boosting throughout capacity of the Baltic Pipeline System (the BPS) to 62 mln t from 50 mln t. It is not improbable that the Company would borrow funds for the project.
S.M. Vainshtock said preliminary negotiations with several financial institutions are under way, both Russian (including Sberbank) and foreign. Should it be necessary for the Company to take credits, this is the credit terms that would prevail when deciding on the borrower.
There were also questions about the volumes of exports.
Oil exports via Transneft’s system are expected to make some 260 mln t in 2005 against 240 mln t in 2004.