By Ofeliya Afandiyeva
SOCAR Petroleum SA Romania will lease six filling stations operating under Aral M.T.B SRL, local media reported citing Romanian Competition Council on April 7.
“The Competition Council authorized the transaction through which Socar Petroleum S.A. takes over the use right of six fuel distribution stations currently operated by Aral M.T.B. SRL. The six fuel distribution stations, located in Arad, Timiș and Sibiu counties, are to be operated by Socar based on a rental contract,” the official statement posted on the Council’s official website said.
Romanian Competition Council also informed that Socar Petroleum S.A. is a company belonging to Socar Group that operates on the fuel market, both on the retail and wholesale segment and owns a national gas station network.
“Following the analysis, the Competition Council found that this operation does not raise significant obstacles to effective competition on the Romanian market or a substantial part of it and that there are no serious doubts about its compatibility with a normal competitive environment,” the Council emphasized.
According to the Council, 6 petrol stations must be leased to SOCAR on the basis of a 10-year lease agreement.
The cost of the deal is not disclosed.
Earlier, the deputy head of the Public Relations and Event Management Department of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR) Ibrahim Ahmadov told that the company intends to expand its business in Romania by renting six filling stations owned by Aral M.T.B. SRL.
He mentioned that all the filling stations of this company are located in places with heavy traffic.
“In order to enter the regions, where there are no filling stations under SOCAR brand name, our company should either buy land plots and build filling stations there or to rent existing filling stations by rebranding them in accordance with SOCAR standards,” Ahmadov stated.
Note that SOCAR has become one of the five key players in the energy market of Romania. The company operates in Romania through its subsidiary - SOCAR Petroleum SA established in 2011 to manage the purchase and sale of petroleum products in Romania and provide supply services that meet international standards and diversified transportation infrastructure.
Successful implementing investment projects in Romania, SOCAR continues to expand its network of petrol stations in the country's largest cities.
Currently, SOCAR has filling stations in 21 Romanian regions - Botosani, Suceava, Nyamts, Iasi, Bihor, Buzau, Bacau, Vrancea, Timis, Ilfov, Cluj, Valcea, Arad, Arges, Bistrica-Nasaud, Hunedoara, Sibiu, Bucharest, Braşov, Satu and Craiova.
Total investments made by SOCAR to Romania amounted to $77.7 million in 2011-2017. SOCAR paid $86.4 million tax to the Romanian budget in the same period.
As a result of the activities of SOCAR Petroleum SA in Romania, energy cooperation between the two countries is expanding. Romanian companies are actively participating in the implementation of energy projects in Azerbaijan, as well.
ROMGAZ and TRANSGAZ, two of the most important Romanian companies in the natural gas sector, also have a long-standing cooperation with SOCAR.
Moreover, the Romanian Competition Council is an autonomous administrative body aimed at protecting and stimulating competition in order to ensure a normal competitive environment, with a view towards the consumers’ interests.
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