Russian fuel is again allowed to be exported
According to the Ministry of Energy, the government lifted the temporary ban on the export of motor gasoline from Russia on November 17. As you know, it was introduced on September 21 as part of stabilizing prices on the domestic motor fuel market. The authorities believe that the problem with fuel within the country has generally been successfully resolved. For now, restrictions remain only on gasoline with a high octane number AI-95.
According to the Ministry of Energy, the need to limit the export of motor gasoline has exhausted itself. Over the past two months (since September 21), a surplus of gasoline has formed on the market - about 2 million tons. In addition, in winter, the demand for this type of fuel traditionally decreases, the peak of its consumption is recorded in the spring-summer period and until mid-October: during harvesting and mass holidays.
Well, as a final and decisive argument in favor of lifting the export embargo, domestic refineries complete maintenance and preventative measures by winter and produce products as planned.
Retail gasoline prices also decreased slightly from their September values, but their growth still outpaces inflation. According to Rosstat, since the end of December last year, the cost of AI-92 gasoline has increased by 7%, AI-95 by 7.2, and AI-98 and higher - by 10.5%.
Of course, every private car owner who is familiar with the peculiarities of our market economy will now think that all motor gasoline will be exported after the restrictions are lifted. And prices at gas stations will creep up again.
The Ministry of Energy asks Russians not to worry about this. More than 50% of diesel fuel from Russia goes to foreign markets. That is why in September, domestic peasants were left without diesel fuel and there was even a risk of stopping the harvesting campaign. Manufacturers exported diesel fuel using all available means of transport.
But as for gasoline, we sell it abroad within 10-14% of the total volume. Maybe manufacturers would be happy to increase their supplies abroad. But for now our diesel fuel is in demand there, not our gasoline.
The Ministry of Energy also found a panacea for the rise in price of this fuel within Russia. In particular, during repair or maintenance work at oil refineries, it is allowed to use non-original parts and spare parts. That is, those that are made in the image and likeness of the original ones, but without agreement with the manufacturer - a foreign supplier. This will eliminate the problem of shortage of spare parts and the refineries will be put into operation strictly on schedule after scheduled repairs.
Some experts believe that Russian motorists can sleep peacefully, at least until the New Year, which, by the way, is just around the corner - many Russians, by the way, also like to travel during the long winter holidays.
However, Finam investment consultant Timur Nigmatullin believes that we should not expect another price surge at gas stations.
“The key point in the government’s decision is not the export permit, but compensation from the budget for oil workers,” he says. - From October 1, the fuel damper was returned to the previous formula, that is, they began to be compensated from the budget for part of the difference between export and Russian fuel prices - for supplies to the domestic market at low prices. Before the September crisis, these payments were halved. And in October they were restored again. Stock quotes began to decline only after the damper returned to its previous values.
In general, there will be compensation from the budget for oil workers, and there will also be relatively low (at least relatively stable) gasoline prices.
Analysts have certain doubts about the scheme presented by the Ministry of Energy regarding the intention to use non-original parts in the repair of oil equipment. Today, with the “nuclear” sanctions imposed against Russia, this is a big and serious problem. Logistics chains have been disrupted, and import deliveries have to wait months. For this reason, failures in fuel production occur.
However, as experts assure, we will not be able to make an exact copy of the original using imported equipment. You can talk as much as you like about self-sufficiency and import substitution, but in fact, oil refiners are taking a big risk with such a substitution.