Lithuania cannot subsidize privately-owned oil refinery Orlen Lietuva, says President Dalia Grybauskaitė, adding that she expects PKN Orlen, the Polish mother company, to help its Lithuanian subsidiary continue operations.
© DELFI / Kiril Čachovskij

“We hope that the private Polish company will find possibilities to continue operations. The government, as far as I know, is ready to help as much as possible, as much as it is possible for Lithuania – to help this company stay afloat. I think that the concessions proposed are really substantial. However, the Lithuanian government cannot provide direct subsidies,” she told reporters in Vilnius on Thursday.

PKN Orlen should be the first to take responsibility, she said.

At the same time, Grybauskaitė said she hoped that Orlen Lietuva would not be shut down.

“I hope we will not face such a situation. We know about this company’s difficulties but difficulties that such oil refineries face are very similar all across Europe. Eleven such companies closed down in the past five years, exactly because they had become unprofitable,” the president said.

She added that Orlen Lietuva had no oil resources of its own and it situation was not easy.

PKN Orlen, the owner of Orlen Lietuva, said in its strategy for 2014-2017, which was released on Wednesday, that “... the first and fourth quarters of each year are typically the most challenging periods for the refining business, when the industry faces lowest margins and weaker sales. This is why we are bracing for worse scenarios that may materialize at the end of 2014 and in early 2015. As the first step, we could be forced to temporarily shut down the Mazeikiai refinery.”

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