Not so quiet on the waterfront

  • 2012-06-27
  • From wire reports

KLAIPEDA - Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius thinks that the disagreements between Klaipedos Nafta (Klaipedos Oil), UAB and State Enterprise Klaipeda State Seaport Authority should not be exaggerated, as the latter refuses to sign the treaty on the construction of the liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Klaipeda, reports ELTA. The PM says that these are merely “working debates” which soon will be over.

“In fact, these are purely working debates, which is a normal part of the implementation of such large-scale projects, especially when there is more than one company to implement it. Perhaps the only thing is that such discussions should be private rather than public. We are carefully following the process and work that has to be done. Because of a tough schedule, there is not much time for such discussions,” he said Tuesday in an interview on the national radio station.

The prime minister reiterated that the LNG project is national in scope, while the Klaipeda Seaport as well as the company Klaipedos Nafta are both state-owned. Therefore, he says, the differences between them should be reconciled on the state level, which is not a problem.

Last Friday, during a sitting of the Klaipeda Seaport Council on the construction of the LNG terminal in the port, Director General of the Seaport Authority Eugenijus Gentvilas said that the authority will not sign a draft treaty with Klaipedos Nafta, which they had received on June 14, because the board of the Seaport Authority opposes the signing.

According to preliminary estimates, under the treaty the Seaport Authority would have to invest more than 230 million litas (66.6 million euros) in the LNG terminal. Meanwhile, from 2012 to 2014, the Authority plans to invest a total of 514 million litas, of which 123 million litas would be directed to the project terminal. What is more, in these 3 years the Seaport Authority, according to the treaty, would pay 50 percent of its profit to the state budget (around 130 million litas). That means a destruction of the seaport and its stevedoring companies, because only 5 percent of the projected funding would be left for its own new projects.