FADEYEV: YUKOS CAN RESUME OIL SUPPLIES TO CHINA

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MOSCOW, September 30 (RIA Novosti) - Yukos can resume oil supplies to China since October 20, said Gennady Fadeyev, head of the Russian Railways (RZhD) joint-stock company.

"The contract signed with Yukos was being fulfilled until October 1. According to my information sources, there will be a brief interval in supplies till October 20, and then they will be resumed," Fadeyev said to journalists.

In his words, since October 1, Yukos' oil supplies to China will be limited for a while.

At the end of September, Yukos announced partial suspension of its direct oil exports to China amounting to a million tons till the end of this year.

"This suspension was caused by Yukos unable any longer to continue its pre-export financing of oil supplies to the China National Petroleum Corporation," the company reported.

On Thursday, the China National Petroleum Corporation made an official statement that it received a notification from Yukos that it could not carry on petroleum supplies.

The Chinese company's statement says that Yukos was to deliver 3.86 million tons of oil this year, of which only 2.84 million tons had come in so far. Thus, the Chinese National Petroleum Corporation may find itself short of a million tons of oil this year.

Ivan Materov, Russia's deputy industry and energy minister, told journalists that other Russian companies would make up for Yukos' oil supplies to China. "Of course, China is worried, as well as Slovakia, which also receives oil from Yukos. Our companies will make up for Yukos' oil supplies to China, and I think the problem will have a positive solution," Materov said. However, he did not name the companies which would do this.

Leonid Fedun, Lukoil's vice president, explained to journalists that oil supplies to China were gainless for Lukoil because of a high transport constituent and high export taxes.

Surgutneftegaz, another major oil extractor in Russia, has no intention to supply oil to China either. Sergei Fyodorov, Surgutneftegaz's deputy general director, said that his company was not planning to revise its oil supply routes in the near future.

Surgutneftegaz does not intend to acquire assets of Yukos, the company says in an official statement circulated today.

"Surgutneftegaz has no plans to acquire whatever Yukos assets with the exception of the Talakan oilfield property complex and Lenaneftegaz shares. Yukos, Sakhaneftegaz and Surgutneftegaz signed a contract on the purchases last March," points out the statement.

"We'll wait and see till an auction is announced [to sell Yuganskneftegaz, the biggest Yukos oil-drilling affiliate], and we know its terms and deadline. Meanwhile, no one has made us any offers-and we are not the ones to evaluate others' assets," Mr. Fyodorov remarked on a previous occasion.

Yukos had its branches' stock arrested on back taxes for 2000. At present, the Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein transnational investment bank goes on evaluating Yuganskneftegaz assets to be sold for partial fiscal payments. The branch was worth roughly $17 billion, said a preliminary estimation.

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