Five Eastern European nations have signed an agreement that could facilitate transportation of Caspian oil to Poland and the Baltic States without traversing Russian territory.
The agreement to extend Ukraine’s Odessa-Brody pipeline to Plock (near
Warsaw) in Poland and possibly on to Gdansk or Lithuania was signed on 10 October in Lithuanian capital Vilnius by the following governments:
The pipeline from Odessa to Brody was completed in 2001 but only began transporting oil in 2004 – in the opposite direction from that which was intended, taking Druzhba pipeline oil south to the Black Sea port of Odessa.
An extension could alleviate some of these countries’ dependence on Russian oil, but it will need Azerbaijan to find more oil or divert existing supplies. Whether this will happen in reality is a moot point.
Kakakhstan is extremely unlikely to get involved because of its affiliation with Russia, which has geopolitical disputes with each of the four eastern European countries that signed this latest agreement.