Glencore skips buying Russneft oil after Belarus sanctions, traders say

Credit: REUTERS/ARND WIEGMANN

Commodity trader Glencore will not buy any oil from its long-standing partner Russia's Russneft this month after its shareholder Mikhail Gutseriyev was hit by European Union sanctions over Belarus, three market sources said.

MOSCOW, July 6 (Reuters) - Commodity trader Glencore will not buy any oil from its long-standing partner Russia's Russneft this month after its shareholder Mikhail Gutseriyev was hit by European Union sanctions over Belarus, three market sources said.

The EU put Gutseriyev, Belarus's top private investor, on the sanctions list in June in response to a forced landing of a passenger plane in Minsk. Belarus detained an opposition journalist and his girlfriend who were onboard.

Following the EU sanctions, Gutseriyev left Russneft's board of directors, which he used to chair.

European companies, worried about the possible implications of buying oil from Gutseriyev after the EU sanctions, have been seeking clarification from Brussels, traders have said.

Glencore GLEN.L, a shareholder in Russneft, has typically bought all Urals cargoes offered by the company under a long-term deal.

Russneft planned to load 80,000 tonnes of Siberian Light crude oil from the Black Sea port of Novorossiisk on July 10-11. Glencore usually lifts Siberian Light cargoes supplied by Russneft but the cargo was cancelled last week.

Another Russneft cargo is planned for loading from the Baltic sea port of Ust-Luga on July 28-29, the schedule shows.

The cargo of the Urals grade was allocated to the trading firm Petraco, traders said, contradicting the practice of Glencore buying all Urals cargoes offered by Russneft on the Baltics.

It is not clear whether Glencore will resume buying in August.

Glencore declined to comment. Safmar Group, which manages Russneft, along with some other assets of the Gutseriyev family, did not reply to a Reuters request for a comment.

(Reporting by Olga Yagova, Gleb Gorodyankin, additional reporting by Tatiana Voronova; editing by Barbara Lewis)

((Olga.Yagova@thomsonreuters.com;))

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