Refinery beefs up Baltic sales, eyes Poland

  • 2003-06-21
  • Baltic News Service

The oil company Mazeikiu Nafta expects 5 percent growth in oil product sales in Latvia and Estonia this year and to gain a strong foothold in the Polish market in the near future.
"Our aim is to expand wholesale sales of all of Mazeikiu Nafta's products and supply production complying with the [European Union] standards to Latvia and Estonia," Sarunas Kliokys, CEO of Mazeikiu Nafta Trading House, said in a news conference.
He said raising sales of Mazeikiu Nafta's diesel fuel in Latvia and successfully competing with Belarus' was a top priority this year, and Lithuanian diesel fuel sales in Latvia more than tripled last year.
In 2002, Mazeikiu Nafta sold 11 percent of its total output to Latvia and 6 percent each to Estonia and Poland.
The Lithuanian oil refinery processed a total of 6.6 million tons of crude oil last year.
Kliokys said the establishment of a strong presence in the large Polish market would provide significant revenue growth opportunities for Mazeikiu Nafta. The Polish market, estimated at 16 million to 23 million tons, currently imports about 25 percent of its oil products.
Last year Mazeikiu Nafta exported about 50 percent of its products to other countries through the Swiss-registered company Petroval. The refinery sold 28 percent of its output in Lithuania and had an 88 percent share of the domestic market.
Headquartered in Vilnius, Mazeikiu Nafta Trading House was established last month in order to boost marketing and sales of the refinery's products.
The new company, which has an authorized capital of 5.76 million litas (1.7 million euros) is currently setting up offices in Riga and Tallinn and hopes to open one in Warsaw.
Mazeikiu Nafta, which is majority owned by Russian oil giant Yukos, announced an unaudited net profit of 115.8 million litas for the first quarter of 2003, based on the U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, after operating in the red in 2002.
Yukos owns 53.7 percent of Mazeikiu Nafta and is the operator of the oil refinery.