SOCAR says to need filling station network in Turkey by 2020
Baku, Azerbaijan, June 5
By Maksim Tsurkov – Trend:
The issue of Azerbaijani state oil company SOCAR’s creating its own network of filling stations in Turkey remains on the agenda, Zaur Gahramanov, head of SOCAR’s Turkish subsidiary SOCAR Turkey Enerji, told Trend.
“We participated in a tender to buy the Petrol Ofisi network of filling stations, owned by Austria's OMV, but in the end this network was acquired by Vitol. The price range was an important factor for us in this tender because we were not going to overpay for this asset, whereas Vitol offered the highest bid,” he said, adding, “However, we have backup options.”
SOCAR Turkey Enerji does not rush this issue, as the Star refinery (owned by SOCAR) will start operating only in 2018, according to Gahramanov.
“We will need a filling station network by 2020. A network is necessary for a continuous integration of the production cycle. The company can well do without a network of filling stations, but then the production cycle will be incomplete. This is why we are not rushing yet and we have taken a wait and see position. Currently, two options are being considered – either to buy an existing network or create our own,” he noted.
In March, Austria’s OMV agreed to sell 100 percent of the shares in its wholly owned subsidiary OMV Petrol Ofisi to VIP Turkey Enerji AS, a subsidiary of Vitol Investment Partnership Ltd. The deal’s overall value amounted to 1.368 billion euros. The deal is subject to conditions, including the relevant regulatory approvals and is anticipated to close in the third quarter of 2017 at the latest.