BAKU Feb 18 Azerbaijan's state energy company
SOCAR agreed with Russian oil pipeline monopoly Transneft
to export 1.0-1.5 million tonnes of oil via Russia
in 2014, reversing plans to halt exports in March, SOCAR's
"We signed an agreement with Transneft. This agreement is
mutually beneficial," Elshad Nassirov told Reuters.
"Oil volumes to be shipped via Russia this year will be in a
range of 1.0-1.5 million tonnes."
SOCAR had planned to halt oil exports via Russia in March,
opting instead to send the bulk of its crude through Turkey and
retaining some to cover rising domestic demand for oil products.
Oil exports via Russia were 1.75 million tonnes in 2013,
down from 2.06 million tonnes shipped in 2012.
In May last year, Russia terminated a contract to pump Azeri
oil across its territory, ending a 16-year agreement between the
two countries on the grounds that Azerbaijan had not been
shipping the agreed quantities.
Oil has flowed along the 1,330-km pipeline from the Azeri
capital of Baku on the Caspian Sea to the Russian Black Sea port
of Novorossiisk since May under a separate contract between
Transneft and SOCAR.
Nassirov said oil volumes to be shipped via Russia every
month, and a timetable of shipments, would be agreed with
Transneft within days.
(Reporting by Margarita Antidze; Editing by Anthony Barker)