SLOVAKIA could encounter serious problems if the flow of Russian oil is interrupted in Ukraine, as it acquires all of its oil supplies via its eastern neighbour, analyst Jozef Badida from the energieprevas.sk website told TASR on August 22.
“While Europe consumes approximately 30 percent of Russia’s gas, of which more than half flows through Ukraine, the southern branch of the Druzba oil pipeline technically supplies only Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Therefore, it’s no wonder that the attention of the European media and statesmen is directed mainly at natural gas, while the transport of oil is being neglected,” stated the analyst, as quoted by TASR.
Badida went on to say that while the natural gas capacities of connections with surrounding countries are sufficient for Slovakia to be able to import the commodity partly via alternative routes, the situation concerning oil is quite different. If it came to cuts in oil transport through the Ukrainian branch of the Druzba oil pipeline, Slovakia would have to rely on its 90-day reserves and limited use of the Adria oil pipeline.
Badida further observed that if necessary Slovakia could consider a reverse flow via the Druzba pipeline. This alternative has not been tried out yet, and it will largely depend on the skills of technicians from Czech and Slovak oil network administrators Mero and Transpetrol.
“In a critical situation, we would have to rely on solidarity on the part of European companies that have arranged for certain volumes in the significantly used TAL oil pipeline,” said the analyst, as quoted by TASR.
Slovakia could possibly also make use of oil supplies via the Odessa-Brody pipeline, and in the future through the planned Bratislava-Schwechat pipeline, added the expert.
Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.