MOSCOW Dec 26 Russia's output of oil products
is expected to fall by about 2.5 percent in 2017 due to further
work on a massive refinery modernisation programme aimed at
boosting fuel quality, a deputy energy minister said.
In 2011, the government and oil producers agreed on the $50
billion initiative to update Russia's refineries, most of which
were built in the 1940s and 1970s.
Russia's gasoline supplies almost ran dry in 2011 due to a
lack of modern refining capacity, angering many voters in the
run-up to Vladimir Putin's election to a third presidential
Deputy Energy Minister Kirill Molodtsov told a briefing in
comments cleared for publication on Monday that the country
would produce 277 million tonnes of oil products in 2016,
falling to an estimated 270 million tonnes of higher quality
fuels in 2017.
"This is mainly related to the rise in refinery yield," he
said, adding that he did not expect fuel shortages next year
despite extensive plans for refinery maintenance.
He said gasoline production was estimated at 39.8 million
tonnes in 2017, with diesel output seen at more than 70 million
Production of fuel oil could decline by more than two
million tonnes due to an increase in export duty from Jan. 1
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Helen Popper)