Russia Turns to Kazakhstan for Gasoline Supply in Case of Shortages

Amidst concerns over potential fuel shortages exacerbated by Ukrainian drone attacks, Russia has approached Kazakhstan with a request to stand ready to supply 100,000 tons of gasoline, as reported by three industry sources to Reuters.

According to one of the sources, an agreement regarding the utilization of reserves for Russia has already been reached. However, Shyngys Ilyasov, an advisor to Kazakhstan's energy minister, stated that the energy ministry has not yet received such a request from its Russian counterpart. The Russian energy ministry has refrained from commenting on the matter.

Belarus, neighboring Kazakhstan, has already agreed to assist Russia in supplying gasoline.

The drone attacks have led to the disruption of approximately 14% of Russia's primary oil refining capacity by the end of March. Despite this, Russian authorities have maintained that the domestic fuel market remains stable with ample stockpiles.

Typically a net exporter of fuel, Russia has been compelled to import due to refinery disruptions. Moscow has urged Kazakhstan to establish an emergency reserve of 100,000 metric tons of gasoline to be prepared for supplying Russia.

In a bid to mitigate potential fuel shortages, Russia imposed a gasoline export ban for six months starting from March 1. However, this ban does not apply to the Moscow-led Eurasian Economic Union, which includes Kazakhstan, among others.

Last week, the Orsk oil refinery in the Urals ceased production due to widespread floods, further complicating the situation. Kazakhstan, the world's largest land-locked country, has also restricted fuel exports until the end of the year, except for humanitarian purposes.

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