Croatia, Government urges INA to increase domestic oil production

, SEE Energy News

The announced EU embargo on Russian oil imports has brought back into focus the need to increase domestic oil production, which is currently extracted from 38 fields and meets about 15 % of annual processing in the Rijeka refinery.

The annual oil production at Croatia’s fields is almost nothing compared to what it can be, says academic Mirko Zelic, former head of INA Naftaplin. According to him, in the fields of Posavina, Podravina, Moslavina, Dinarides and the Adriatic, recoverable quantities of 800 to 900 million tons of oil equivalent have been identified and this is the crucial moment for Croatia to turn back to hydrocarbon exploration activities in order to increase domestic oil and gas production. He even suggests that the Government should establish a new company that will perform these activities if INA (majority owned by Hungarian MOL) is not willing to be involved.

The Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development said that they are currently analyzing the possibilities of increasing domestic production with the only oil producer in Croatia – INA. The positive outcome of these analyzes would certainly have a favorable effect on further strengthening the energy independence of Croatia.

According to the annual publication of Hrvoje Pozar Energy Institute, domestic oil and condensate reserves are around 11 million cubic meters, while the annual domestic oil production is around 600 thousand tons. When asked whether the Government can ban the export of oil extracted in Croatia, the Ministry of Economy said that the current legislation does not restrict the transport of domestic oil for processing to other countries, in normal market conditions.