Russia halts transit of Kazakh oil to Europe – media

Supply via a major Caspian pipeline has been stopped due to technical violations, according to the news agency Sputnik

A Russian court on Wednesday ordered a 30-day suspension of the activity of the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC), which takes oil from Kazakhstan to the Black Sea via one of the world’s largest pipelines.

The suspension of the transit was necessitated by technical issues identified by Russia’s consumer protection watchdog Rospotrebnadzor.

According to Reuters, the CPC operator said that the ruling to suspend operations was related to paperwork on oil spills and that the consortium had to abide by it.

The company also stated it had submitted an appeal to the court in the Russian city of Novorossiysk requesting that enforcement of the ruling be deferred to avoid a stoppage that could lead to irrevocable consequences for the pipeline equipment.

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Meanwhile, trading sources familiar with the operations of the terminal told Reuters that oil exports from the CPC terminal on the Black Sea were continuing on Wednesday morning. Other industry sources confirmed that oil supplies from fields to the CPC pipeline were uninterrupted as of Wednesday morning.

The CPC is a multinational oil transportation project involving Russia, Kazakhstan and a consortium of leading oil companies. The pipeline system mainly collects crude from the large oil fields of western Kazakhstan but also from Russia. Its total capacity is over a million barrels of oil per day, which is 2.3% of global seaborne crude trade.

The pipeline delivers around 1.2 million barrels of crude oil daily from Kazakhstan to Europe and also for subsequent shipment to the US. Earlier this year, its operations were interrupted by storm damage to the Black Sea’s terminal equipment.

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