Energy Minister forecasts volume of Russia's oil reserve

The volume of the state oil reserve will amount to about 5-10m tons in theshort term, Russian Energy Minister Igor Yusufov announced after a meetingof the State Council, which was devoted to the development of the coalindustry. According to the Energy Minister, the Cabinet is elaborating onthe possibility of establishing an oil reserve now. A state oil reservewould enable the government to influence domestic and export oil prices.The Energy Minister stressed that the establishment of an oil reserve waslinked to the settlement of problems with storage facilities, namelyconstructing state oil storage facilities or renting them from oilcompanies. In addition, the establishment of an oil reserve is linked tolegal issues of the state influence on price policies.Yusufov recalled that Russia produced 350m tons of oil a year, and only athird of this amount was consumed on the domestic market, as two thirds ofoil were exported..