Poland expects Lithuania to support Mazeikiu refinery development

Polish fuel giant PKN Orlen has said it is hopeful that the Lithuanian government will make its position clear on the development of the Mazeikiu oil refinery within a month.

In September, PKN Orlen said that it expected the Lithuanian government to support its planned investment in the refinery, which will help make it more resilient to macroeconomic conditions, and to increase its manufacturing capacity of high-margin products, including petrols and jet fuel.

"PKN Orlen expects the Lithuanian government to present its position regarding the development of the Mazeikiu oil refinery within a month," Daniel Obajtek told a Polish public television programme on Thursday, following talks with the Lithuanian prime minister.

The company bought 53.7 percent of the shares in the refinery's owner, Mazeikiu Nafta, from Jukos for USD 1.49 billion in 2006, and later bought a further 30.66 percent through a contract with the Lithuanian government for more than USD 852 million.

After buying the Lithuanian government's remaining 10 percent stake six years ago, and buying up the stakes of smaller investors, PKN Orlen now owns 100 percent of the Lithuanian refinery, which was rebranded as Orlen Lietuva in 2009.

Obajtek added that if the Lithuanian government backed Orlen, the decision to invest in the facility could be taken in late May or early June.

He also said a key goal for Orlen was to reduce the refinery’s emissions through modernisation and optimising its production.