Poland still buying Russian oil: Deputy minister

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Poland is still buying ten percent of its oil supplies from Russia, a deputy minister for state assets said on Thursday, despite Warsaw’s repeated calls for strengthening sanctions on Russian oil.

An embargo on Russia oil products -- like diesel, gasoline and jet fuel -- implemented by the bloc came into effect on Sunday.

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That expanded on an EU embargo on seaborne oil deliveries introduced two months ago.

Poland had declared last year it had a “radical plan” of stopping all Russian oil imports by the end of 2022.

But deputy minister for state assets Maciej Malecki told parliament that Poland still has a valid contract with a Russian company Tatneft.

The deal expiring at the end of 2024 covers “around 10 percent of the needs of (Polish oil firm) Orlen,” Malecki said.

That means Poland is still buying 200,000 tonnes of oil from Russia each month.

According to Malecki, Orlen -- a state company -- “strongly declared that it would stop buying Russian oil as soon as an EU embargo is introduced.”

Malecki said that the current contract with Tatneft cannot be terminated as it would force Warsaw to pay compensation fees to the Russian firm.

Over recent years, Poland has largely diversified its oil and gas supplies, and according to Malecki, the deal with Tatneft is the “only” energy contract with Russia.

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