Oil Supply to Parts of Europe through the Druzhba Pipeline Temporarily Suspended

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Oil Supply to Parts of Europe through the Druzhba Pipeline Temporarily Suspended

Pipeline valve with manometer (© Shutterstock/Krasowit)
Pipeline valve with manometer (© Shutterstock/Krasowit)

Tougher times for Europe following a temporary suspension of oil supply through the Druzhba pipeline to parts of Eastern and Central Europe announced by oil pipeline operators in Slovakia and hungury, Reuters reported on November 15, 2022.

Although the extent of the oil supply disruption was not immediately clarified, the halt in oil supply was concurrent with an explosion in one of the villages in Poland, near the country's border with Ukraine. According to Hungary's MOL (MOLB.BU) , the company was briefed by its Ukrainian counterpart that the disruption was caused by Russia's rocket hit on a power station located near the Belarus border, which provides electricity to a pump station.

Slovakia-based operator, Transpetrol also confirmed the suspension, citing a technical hitch on the Ukrainian side without mentioning the rocket strike.

The Druzhba pipeline network is one of the key pipelines supplying Russian oil to Europe. The pipeline starts in Russia and branches in Belarus into Ukraine, from where it again splits supplies of oil into many countries depending on it in Eastern and Central Europe, including Slovakia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic.

"The reason for the suspension of supplies has not yet been officially confirmed by the Ukrainian side," said Transpetrol. The company added it expected to have more information about what led to the pipeline shutdown by Wednesday.

Polish pipeline operator PERN confirmed on Tuesday that oil flowed normally through the polish section of the pipeline, with Czech operator MERO also reporting a normal flow of oil through a section that supplies the country.

Transneft (TRNF_p.MM), Russia's state-owned pipeline monopoly responsible for oil supply through the key Druzhba pipeline, was notified by Ukraine about the temporary suspension of oil supply to Hungary RIA news agency reported, quoting Transneft.

Oil prices jumped following the news, pushing the Brent benchmark upwards by 0.8% on the same day.

One day later, on November 16, 2022, oil flow through the pipeline resumed.

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