Sechin, Mikhelson and Timchenko again knock out preferences for themselves
Rosneft and NOVATEK wrote to Prime Minister Mishustin a complaint against the FAS and Gazprom, who had developed a new scheme for tariffs for gas transportation. All main gas pipelines in the country belong to Gazprom, the monopolist receives a fee for the passage of “blue fuel”, but the tariff has not changed since 2015 – while the principle of its formation is classified.
Gazprom believes that it is time to increase it. Sechin and the owners of NOVATEK do not like this, they are sure that the “public property” already overestimates the cost of their services, but it is not in their rules to speak openly – it is better to discuss behind the scenes and send a letter to Mishustin. And in parallel, launch a wave of publications about the largest taxpayer in the country, which is being infringed on by unfair tariffs and taxes. As a result, Sechin laments, the company cannot plan its investments and develop projects.
Gas producers believe that over seven years they overpaid 431 billion rubles for Gazprom’s gas transportation services, since the monopolist annually reduced investments in the development of the gas transportation system, but this component did not change in the tariff. Gazprom assures that it has lost about 800 billion rubles. tariff revenue compared to the situation if tariffs were indexed to inflation. The new tariff calculation methodology has been developed according to the “input-output” scheme, where the Unified Gas System is divided into zones, each of which has its own tariff.
The Federal Antimonopoly Service has already sent the document to the Ministry of Justice, but Sechin and Mikhelson insist on its abolition and reduction of the tariff to an “economically justified level” – that is, that suits Rosneft and NOVATEK (ideally, of course, Miller would also pay extra). Here we can recall that the head of Rosneft, Igor Sechin, at the end of last year, stood in the way of the presidential decree on retaliatory measures to the price ceiling for Russian oil, begging for the status of a single exporter, and previously stubbornly sought to cancel Gazprom’s monopoly on gas exports. Sechin and Miller are old enemies, from the time they worked in the St. Petersburg mayor’s office. Miller came from the reformers of the Chubais team, Sechin – from circles close to the KGB, where he got along with Putin.
Gazprom, however, is now facing an acute money issue: deliveries to Europe have fallen to a record low, and there is nothing to replace these “lost revenues”. Sechin and Mikhelson are not in poverty, Rosneft paid 190.4 billion rubles in dividends at the end of last year, NOVATEK – 319.9 billion rubles, while Gazprom refused to pay shareholders at the end of 2022. The head of Rosneft, if anything, according to the data for the fall of 2021, owns 0.1288% of the company’s shares.
The fight over tariffs is still going on mostly under the carpet, but given Igor Ivanovich’s love for spectacular PR moves, one can expect interesting leaks.