Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov met on November 29 with Russian producers of large-diameter pipes, who were dissatisfied with the procurement policy of Gazprom, sources close to the participants of the meeting reported.
A source familiar with the results of the meeting said that the ministry agreed to organize a working group to discuss the mechanism for Gazprom’s pipe procurements. The group will comprise representatives of the ministry, the Federal Antimonopoly Service, Gazprom, and pipe producers, and if no consensus is reached, the dispute will be discussed at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, the source said.
According to the documents of dissatisfied producers, production capacities of large-diameter pipes exceed demand of the internal market 3-fold, and producers are capable of satisfying all Gazprom’s requirements at competitive prices. But Gazprom’s domestic procurement accounts only for 58% of the company’s purchases in 2018, and the share of pipes bought through tenders instead of direct purchases fell to 71% this year from 81% a year before.
“Gazprom fulfilled the bulk of procurements for 2019-2020 buying from a single supplier without considering any other options and without holding tenders based on decisions of a budget committee,” the materials of pipe producers read.
The list of pipe producers’ proposals include a ban on procurements from a single supplier unless there are no alternatives or in an emergency; a ban on buying more than 10,000 tons of pipes directly from a single supplier per year; access to information about Gazprom’s mid-term demand for pipes for 2019-2022; and access to information on changes of pricing offers during tenders.
The pipe producers also want Gazprom to buy only 15% of pipes at short-term contracts and the rest under long-term contracts. They also want it to buy no more than 160,000 tons of pipes in a single long-term lot. A winner of Gazprom’s tender should account for no more than 60% of pipes bought through the tender, while the second-place winner should account for 25%, and the third for 15%. (Prime/Ukrainian metal)
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