Why does refinery in RS bother Zagreb: INA and MOL behind the oil refinery dispute between Croatia and Republika Srpska, regaining oil market positions in the region?

12. February 2013. / SEE Energy News

Croatian Government announced that international dispute against BiH could be launched because of supposed air pollution in Slavonski Brod.

The pollution is prescribed to Oil Refinery in Brod that was estimated by certain experts as “classical war” for market and that strategic interests are behind story about INA and MOL.

Minister of Environment in Croatia, Mihael Zmajlovic, announced that legal experts who will run a lawsuit against BiH could be engaged if the pollution problem in Slavonski Brod is not going to be solved in the near future.

However, even a brief glance at results of daily measurements of air quality in Croatian towns, where refineries like Rijeka’s refinery exist, shows that air pollution in these cities is incomparably bigger than air pollution in Slavonski Brod. The whole problem is actually exaggerated according to experts, it was written in “Press”, Republika Srpska’s edition.

Presence of sulfur-hydrogen of 1,2 micrograms per cubic meter was measured, according to yesterday’s results of air purity in Rijeka, while measuring station in Slavonski Brod showed 0,8 micrograms pollution.

To put it simply, that means that air in Rijeka is more polluted than air in Slavonski Brod on the basis of this landfill gas emissions. It can be significant, if it’s known that Croatian side minds excessive sulfur-hydrogen emission of ship refinery.

Oil business experts claim that ecology is the background of the whole story and that INA’s corporation attempt together with MOL’s attempt to recover lost positions on BiH market are hiding behind everything.

Minister of Spatial Planning, Construction and Ecology in Republika Srpska, Srebrenka Golic, says that refinery committed to carry out the whole range of technological process promotion measurements in order to decrease harmful gas emission.
She stresses that deadlines for this activities began to circulate last year when they got construction permission.

“On the other side, mixed working group consisted of Croatian and Serbian experts have a task to follow pollution data on Brod area and to identify all polluters”, she stated.

Oil business expert Dusko Bogdanovic claims that ecology is being used as a cover for trade positions in BiH that are significantly disturbed by production launching in Brod.

“It was important to find a reason for destabilization of Oil Refinery in Brod, and ecology was the easiest to choose. However, they forgot that Refinery has been working 120 years so far, and it suddenly causes ecological problems now, when it got modern technology”, Bogdanovic said. It wasn’t a problem before war, and it is now. Bogdanovic says that it isn’t disputable that it emits gases as a big facility and that gases can be sensed, but this air pollution is in significantly smaller form than it intends to be presented.

On the other side, workers of “Optima group” don’t want to comment claims for background of Croatian side activity. They repeat that they’re ready to work actively with Croatian Government on ecological problems’ resolving.

Rade Vidakovic, Head of Sector for Public Relations, reminds that 120 million Euros have been invested in modernization so far, but that additional investments are required in order to manage maximal ecological standard.

Source Serbia Energy SEE Desk

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