Poland's Orlen says will invest in its Lithuanian crude refinery
Orlen's chief executive said on Wednesday that the Polish oil group intends to invest in its Lithuanian crude oil refinery, noting an improvement in relations with Lithuania's authorities.
"Let me assure you that work in Lithuania is very important for Orlen and our assets must serve both the economy of the Lithuanian state and the economy of the Polish state," Daniel Obajtek said after meeting with Lithuanian Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis in Krynica.
Obajtek said that the group will meet its commitments under a memorandum signed in March and will invest in upgrading the refinery in Mazeikiai, in northwestern Lithuania, and in infrastructure.
The Lithuanian government and Orlen have so far given no details about the Polish group's planned investments.
"(Orlen Lietuva) is (Lithuania's) biggest tax payer and an exporter that invests in the future. It's good that we can talk about the company's modernization," Skvernelis said after the meeting.
The prime minister told reporters later that Orlen could also expand its retail fuel chain in Lithuania.
"Modernization, development and the import of oil products made in Mažeikiai to Poland by our railways, and perhaps even an expansion of gas stations, which could give a boost to our small and medium-sized businesses, because a gas station is also a point of sale," he said.
Under the memorandum on cooperation signed by the Lithuanian government and the Polish group last March, Orlen will invest in the Mažeikiai refinery and will not cut jobs, and the government, on its part, will review Public Service Obligation (PSO) tariffs for the company and will look at possibilities for building a product pipeline to Klaipėda.