On 4 September 2019, the head of Rosneft Igor Sechin told RIA Novosti that Transneft should apologise for the statements of its representative Igor Demin, who commented last week on the proposals aimed at improving the quality of oil in the oil pipeline system, which had been sent to Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev by Gerhard Schroeder, the Chairman of Rosneft’s Board of Directors. As Igor Sechin explained, he “does not understand why Transneft’s spokesman began commenting on the correspondence between Schroeder and the Russian government.” The head of Transneft Nikolay Tokarev gave his explanations to Kommersant.
— Igor Sechin demanded that Transneft apologise for the statements of the Company's press secretary. Are you ready to apologise?
— The head of Rosneft Igor Sechin made some very sharp remarks on Wednesday. He believes that if we are sane and well-mannered people, then we must apologise. However, for our part, we believe that our comment was completely normal and informative.
In response, I’d like to say just one thing: if they are sane and well-mannered people, then, first of all, the head of Rosneft should give instructions to his press secretary Mikhail Leontyev, who, in his official capacity, uses four-letter words to insult people, to apologise to all those people.
Only after that will he be in the position to advise us on how we should deal with our representative.
— Is it true that payment of compensations to those consumers who received substandard oil via the Druzhba pipeline is delayed?
— Currently, the Government and the Ministry of Energy, as well as all interested agencies and companies that are involved in the accident related to oil contamination are effectively interacting with each other in order to solve the issue of compensation.
— Have foreign consumers, in particular German ones, made any claims regarding the current quality of oil?
— As for claims from Germany, we know who organises protest rallies at refineries, poisons the atmosphere and involves our German colleagues in this conflict. It is clear that Rosneft needs this situation to continue (Rosneft owns a controlling stake in a refinery in the German city of Schwedt – Kommersant).
— Rosneft said that they opposed mixing contaminated oil containing organochlorines with normal crude in order to bring the content of organochlorines down to the maximum permitted amount of 6ppm, as this entailed artificial deterioration in oil quality. Are consumers really not willing to accept crude with such parameters?
— This is nothing but bluff. There is a GOST state standard and technical regulations that allow such content, and we provide for parameters that are much lower than this level. Moreover, if you look at the statistics for the ports of Primorsk and Ust-Luga, through which oil is exported from our system, you can see that the organochlorine content is within the range of 2.5–3 ppm. This is a completely normal and approved level. In addition, our colleagues from Lotos (the company that owns the refinery in Gdansk, Poland – Kommersant) unequivocally stated that this was a completely safe and natural way of normalising oil that turned out to be substandard. All those conversations about the need to reduce the allowed content to 1 ppm (this is one of Gerhard Schroeder’s proposals – Kommersant) - Let us see first how they ensure such level.