SOCAR operating in Ukraine in accordance with initial strategy

By Aynur Jafarova

Azerbaijan's state energy company SOCAR is operating in Ukraine in accordance with its initial strategy, a source in the company told Trend Agency last week.

Commenting on the possible impact of the difficult socio-political situation in Ukraine on the activities of SOCAR in this country, the source said despite current problems, SOCAR is carrying out its activities in accordance with its strategy.

"SOCAR, which owns a gas stations' network in Ukraine, currently is pressing ahead with the construction of new gas stations in this country," the source noted.

However, the source didn't specify the exact date of putting these gas stations into operation.

"Currently, the total number of gas stations operating in Ukraine under the SOCAR brand stands at 40," the source added.

Earlier SOCAR said it plans to increase its investment in Ukraine, despite unstable political and economic situation in the country. It also intends to continue the construction of filling station complexes in Ukraine.

"The company plans to expand its filing station complex network in Ukraine by 50 percent by autumn 2014. Additionally, it is expected to open new complexes in those provinces of Ukraine where the company wasn't previously represented," SOCAR Energy Ukraine said.

In its annual report titled "Monitoring of mutual investments in the CIS countries - 2014" the Center for Integrative Studies of the Eurasian Development Bank said SOCAR's total investment made in Ukrainian economy in 2009-2013 exceeded $160 million.

The report noted Azerbaijan was the only CIS country to increase investment in Ukraine in the crisis period. In spring of 2014, SOCAR opened new petrol stations in the country's Khmelnytsky and Poltava regions, bringing their total number to 37.

"The success of SOCAR in the Ukrainian market largely depends on this fact that the Azerbaijani company is focused on the rapidly growing segment of premium fuel and import oil products of the Polish, Belarusian and Lithuanian refineries meeting the Euro-5 and Euro-6 environmental standards," the report said.

SOCAR, which is keen on expanding operations in the retail oil products market abroad, is involved in exploring oil and gas fields, producing, processing, and transporting oil, gas, and gas condensate, marketing petroleum and petrochemical products in the domestic and international markets, and supplying natural gas to industry and the public in Azerbaijan.

SOCAR Ukraine, which represents SOCAR in Ukraine, owns over 60 refueling stations in the country. Some 38 gas stations are operating under the SOCAR brand in the Kyiv, Odessa, Lviv, Nikolaevsk, Rovensk, Cherkasy, Khmelnytsky and Poltava regions of Ukraine.

Azerbaijan's energy giant SOCAR continues to steadily develop its filling stations network both in the capital of Ukraine and other regions. It provides the Ukrainians with quality European oil products in order to strengthen its position in Ukraine's fuel market.

SOCAR invested over $160 million in the development of business in Ukraine from 2009 to 2013. The company's investments in social and charitable initiatives in this country amounted to over $5 billion in the mentioned period.

Currently, the company owns gas stations in Azerbaijan, Switzerland, Georgia and Ukraine. It has representative offices in Georgia, Turkey, Romania, Austria, Switzerland, Kazakhstan, Britain, Iran, Germany and Ukraine, and trading companies in Switzerland, Singapore, Vietnam, Nigeria, and other countries.