: :inin Kyiv (EET)

Russia seeks to classify information on Gazprom, Rosneft public procurement


Russia`s Energy Ministry has supported a proposal to classify public procurement information and also suggested that the scope of data that may not be published on a public procurement portal should be expanded, Russian newspaper Vedomosti reported.
The ministry proposes to classify information regarding not only the procurement of oil and gas, data on related transportation services, land sales and foreign banks` loans, but also information about services related to oil and gas production, their storage, petroleum products refining, the protection of the unified gas supply system and main oil pipelines.
It is reported that CEOs of Russian major energy companies Gazprom and Rosneft were also seeking to classify information about the companies` financial services, purchases of real estate (primarily land), and transactions within the vertically integrated structures.
They claim that public access to procurement data poses risks to companies subject to economic sanctions. According to them, the U.S. and EU authorities may use this information to verify compliance with the sanctions regime, tighten their restrictions or penalize the sanctioned companies` contractors. Financial transactions cannot be carried out quickly, while the disclosure of information on the companies` contractors and their prices increases the cost of loans, which affects the financial market of the whole country, according to energy companies` management.
Rosneft representative says the companies are seeking better protection from non-economic pressure, while the Russian Economic Development Ministry wants to maintain transparency of the companies` procurement.
Chief of the Association of Procurement and Purchasing Managers Andrei Chernogorov noted that no records were made in the Unified Information System under the above mentioned categories in 2015, suggesting that no tenders were held or companies did not publish the necessary data in breach of the legislation. No companies were penalized either.
As the government tightens its control, the companies seek to legalize their established practices.

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