Deliveries of Russian oil to Slovakia resumed
Technological issues related to the canceling of payments due to sanctions on Russia were promptly solved and the deliveries of gas were restored correspondingly.
Slovnaft, the Slovakian oil refinery, said on Wednesday that flows of Russian oil were resumed through Ukraine after supplies had been halted due to Russian-related sanctions.
"Crude oil is already arriving again in Slovakia through the Druzhba pipeline, and in Hungary, the supply is expected to be restored tomorrow," spokesperson Anton Molnar told sources.
Yesterday, Russia's Transneft company has confirmed that Ukrtransnafta - a company that supplies oil transportation through Ukraine - has suspended oil deliveries through the southern stream of the Druzhba pipeline to Hungary, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia.
The company said the Ukrainian side stopped the oil transport "due to not receiving funds for these services."
Spokesman Molnar had said on Tuesday that "there were technical problems at the bank level in connection with the payment of transit fees from the Russian side."
Since the beginning of the war between Ukraine and Russia, Washington and Brussels have pummelled Moscow with unprecedented sanctions, isolating Russia from international trade and diplomatic institutions.
Molnar said on Wednesday that Slovnaft and its Hungarian parent company MOL had volunteered to pay the transit fees to resolve the issue. He added that both Ukraine and Russia had agreed to the idea.
Supplies to the Czech Republic have still not resumed, according to Barbora Putzova, spokeswoman for the Mero company that runs the Czech part of Druzhba.
"The most important thing for us as the transit company is that there is no technical issue and that we have enough oil," she told AFP.
Read more: Russia confirms Ukrtransnafta suspends oil deliveries to Europe
Hungary has recently dealt with the same issue as it figures among the three countries whose deliveries of Russian oil have been halted by Ukrtransnafta for the same reasons.
Hungarian gas company MOL said on Tuesday that oil deliveries via the Druzhba pipeline were suspended a few days ago.
The company added that it has had enough oil reserves for several weeks and it has "initiated negotiations on taking obligations to pay" for the transit itself.
Read more: Hungary to purchase more gas from Russia
The Druzhba pipeline is the world's longest oil pipeline and one of the biggest oil pipeline networks in the world. It carries oil some 4,000 kilometers from the eastern part of European Russia to points in Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria, and Germany.
The halt of oil delivery along a key pipeline transporting Russian crude to central Europe has done nothing more than threatening to limit supplies to the region and expose the EU’s continued reliance on Russian imports.
As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine further escalates, sanctions imposed on Russia seem to have so far more negatively affected EU citizens than the Russian people.
While Russia's economy seems to be defying all the odds, prospects for the EU seem stark as inflation rises at an alarming rate in many member-states.