Druzhba could re-open - ambassador

  • 2008-09-30
  • In cooperation with BNS
VILNIUS - The Russian ambassador to Lithuania has said the the Druzhba oil pipeline could re-open if Lithuania were willing to invest in repairing the line.

Russian Ambassador toLithuania Vladimir Chkhikvadze said that the pipeline, which was closed two years ago amid accusations of political tampering, was a "pure business" matter.

"The Druzhba pipeline - of course, it's business, pure business. IfLithuaniais ready today to contribute several tens of millions of dollarsfor the repairs of the pipeline, it could be reopened," Chkhikvadze told thereporters after the meeting with parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee onTuesday.

"If Lithuania's businessmen come with specific proposals, ready toinvest, we could have a dialogue. I do not want to say that a positivedecision will be taken. But this question may be considered - why not?However, the pipeline has more than 4,000 defects today, so people shouldthink whether it is worthwhile to deal with it or not," the diplomat said.

He highlighted that Russia's main concern was opening the NordStream pipelineunder the Baltic Sea, and that the country would not focus on repairing Druzhba anytime soon.