Lithuania Competition Watchdog Fines Gazprom $48 mln

Posted by Joseph Keefe
Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Fine is highest ever imposed by the Lithuanian watchdog; Gazprom is Lithuania's sole supplier of natural gas. Company also faces EU competition investigation.

Lithuania's competition authority has fined Russia's Gazprom a record 123 million Lithuanian litas ($48 million), saying that the company had prevented competition in the Baltic state.

Gazprom, the world's top gas producer and supplier of about 30 percent of Europe's gas needs, is also facing a European Union investigation over suspected anti-competitive behaviour, including overcharging customers and blocking rival suppliers.

The company, Lithuania's sole natural gas supplier, breached competition rules when it refused to negotiate a deal on gas exchange with Lithuanian power producer Lietuvos Energijos Gamyba in 2012, the Competition Council said in a statement.

The power producer, a part of Lithuania state-owned energy group Lietuvos Energija, had negotiated a deal with an unidentified seller in Western Europe to buy gas from 2013 to 2015. But because the physical delivery was not possible, Lietuvos Energijos Gamyba asked Gazprom to exchange the gas the Lithuanian company planned to buy in Western Europe for volumes the Russian company delivers to Lithuania via Belarus.

Gazprom, however, refused to enter negotiations on such a deal, prompting the Lithuanian company to file a complaint with the competition authority in July 2012.

It meant that Lithuanian consumers had to pay more for electricity and heat generated by burning more expensive Russian gas, the Competition Council said.

Gazprom's actions were in breach of its obligation not to prevent customers from seeking alternative suppliers when the Russian company bought 37.1 percent of Lithuania's gas supplier Lietuvos Dujos a decade ago, the Council added.

The 123.1 million lita fine is the biggest ever issued by the competition authority, the watchdog's spokeswoman said.

Lithuanian state-owned companies last month offered to buy Gazprom's stakes in the country's gas utility Lietuvos Dujos and gas transmission company Amber Grid.

Under European Union gas market rules designed to ensure fair competition, companies that supply energy are not allowed to dominate ownership of the infrastructure.

Gazprom, which is due to hold a board meeting on Wednesday to decide on its shares in Amber Grid and Lietuvos Dujos, declined to comment on the fine.

The competition authority also said that Gazprom refused to provide it with required information, citing the decision of Russia's President Vladimir Putin to ban strategic companies from sharing information with foreign regulators. ($1 = 2.5495 Lithuanian Litas)

 

Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter May 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Costa Concordia Captain's Sentence Upheld

The prison sentence against the former captain of the Costa Concordia cruise liner for his role in the deadly 2012 shipwreck was upheld on Tuesday by an Italian court.

Partners Target Improved Maritime Efficiency

On May 25, 2016, The University of the West Indies Arthur Lok Jack Graduate School of Business (UWI-ALJGSB) together with the Trinidad and Tobago Shipbuilding &

MSHS Group President Recognized for Safety Leadership

Signal Mutual Indemnity Association, a self-insured group provider of Longshore benefits, presented MSHS President Are Friesecke with the Francis R. Sharp Executive

Legal

Seaway Stakeholders File Suit Against US Coast Guard

Ports and vessel operators challenge what they call “flawed pilotage fees”   A coalition of U.S. Great Lakes ports, vessel operating companies and maritime trade

Mothballed Vessels SE Asia Reflect Oil Slump Pain

Around 1,300 offshore support vessels lying idle worldwide. Not everyone in shipping is bemoaning the industry's worst crisis in living memory: a cluster of

Striking Port Workers Protest Greek Port Sales

Greek port workers walked off the job for a sixth day on Tuesday and marched through central Athens to protest the state-sanctioned selloff of the country's two largest ports,

Finance

Baltic Index Up On Higher Capesize Demand

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Tuesday helped by an increase in demand for capesize vessels.

Mothballed Vessels SE Asia Reflect Oil Slump Pain

Around 1,300 offshore support vessels lying idle worldwide. Not everyone in shipping is bemoaning the industry's worst crisis in living memory: a cluster of

Asian Traders Unload Floating Gasoline as Market Flips

Gasoline shifted from tankers to landed storage or sold off; forward gasoline prices to flip to backwardation from July. The number of tankers storing gasoline

Energy

Mothballed Vessels SE Asia Reflect Oil Slump Pain

Around 1,300 offshore support vessels lying idle worldwide. Not everyone in shipping is bemoaning the industry's worst crisis in living memory: a cluster of

Asian Traders Unload Floating Gasoline as Market Flips

Gasoline shifted from tankers to landed storage or sold off; forward gasoline prices to flip to backwardation from July. The number of tankers storing gasoline

Bulgaria, Greece to Consider Greek LNG terminal

Bulgarian state energy holding company BEH and Greek natural gas company Gastrade have set up a joint task force to prepare a proposal to build an off-shore liquefied

LNG

Bulgaria, Greece to Consider Greek LNG terminal

Bulgarian state energy holding company BEH and Greek natural gas company Gastrade have set up a joint task force to prepare a proposal to build an off-shore liquefied

NASSCO Lays Keel for Jones Act Tanker Liberty

U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO hosted a keel laying ceremony on Thursday, May 26 for the Liberty, one of three new ECO Class Jones Act tankers under a

Höegh LNG Turns to Profit in 1Q

Höegh LNG returned to profit following a Profit after tax of USD 6.3 million for the first quarter of 2016, up from USD 4.0 million net loss in the fourth quarter 2015.

Government Update

EU Ships in Libyan Waters Would Undermine Tripoli Govt

The U.N.-backed government in Libya has not invited European ships into its territorial waters to help stop people smuggling because this could harm efforts to

Striking Port Workers Protest Greek Port Sales

Greek port workers walked off the job for a sixth day on Tuesday and marched through central Athens to protest the state-sanctioned selloff of the country's two largest ports,

Bulgaria, Greece to Consider Greek LNG terminal

Bulgarian state energy holding company BEH and Greek natural gas company Gastrade have set up a joint task force to prepare a proposal to build an off-shore liquefied

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Naval Architecture Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1207 sec (8 req/sec)