Russian court suspends Caspian Pipeline Consortium for a month due to environmental violations – RBC

The Primorsky District Court of Novorossiysk has suspended the activities of the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) for a month since July 5. RBC writes about it.

According to the publication, as a result of an inspection conducted on May 6, Rostransnadzor revealed environmental violations at CPC production facilities. The check was initiated by Deputy Prime Minister Victoria Abramchenko. A month later, a protocol was drawn up.

“The Caspian Pipeline Consortium operates within the legal framework of the Russian Federation and is forced to comply with the court decision. The decision will be appealed in accordance with the procedure established by law, ”RBC quotes a message from the company.

As oil and gas market specialist Mikhail Krutikhin explained to The Insider, the suspension of CPC activities may be political in nature:

All environmental violations at the CPC terminal have recently been eliminated. Normal repairs were made to the wharfs that had been damaged during the storm, and discovered World War II munitions were deactivated. Everything is ready to work, and so far no environmental problems have arisen at this facility. Therefore, I think that such court decisions should be attributed to cases of geopolitical pressure on investors and foreign companies. Either for the purpose of taking away property, or this is such a petty revenge on Kazakhstan for not sharing the foreign policy principles of Russia.
But Kazakhstan also has its leverage. If such a conflict breaks out in the oil and gas industry, it could cut off Russian oil exports to China. Rosneft annually exports 10 million tons of oil there through Kazakhstan. Also, Kazakhstan may stop the work of the Orenburg gas processing plant, to which it now supplies gas.

As stated on the CPC website, the pipeline annually pumps over a third of all Kazakhstan's export oil. In mid-April April, Kazakh MP Aikyn Konurov said that about 80% of oil exports to the European Union are carried out through the CPC. According to him, the EU is the largest market in Kazakhstan.

At the end of March, Russia claimed that the CPC had been damaged by a storm. The company said that "the indicated damage is critical and does not allow for the safe operation of the device." At the end of April, a message appeared on the CPC website that the operation of the pipeline had been restored: “Timely detection of malfunctions and decommissioning of equipment made it possible to exclude the possibility of an accidental oil spill into the Black Sea.”

In June, Russia first reduced and then stopped the transportation of Kazakh oil through the CPC. As Kommersant wrote, this is due to the fact that 50 mines from the Second World War were found in the waters of the port of Novorossiysk.

A couple of days before, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev called the "DNR" and "LNR" "quasi-states" and said that Kazakhstan would not recognize them - just like Taiwan, Kosovo, South Ossetia and Abkhazia. This happened at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, where Tokayev was sitting next to Vladimir Putin.

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