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A ceremony was held at the Pančevo Oil Refinery today to mark the start of constructing a bottom-of-the-barrel plant The ceremony was attended by Aleksandar Vučić, President of the Republic of Serbia, Igor Mirović, Prime Minister of the Government of Vojvodina Province, Aleksandar Antić, Serbian Minister of Mining and Energy, Alexander Chepurin, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Serbia, Alexander Dyukov, Chairman of the Management Board of Gazprom Neft, Kirill Tyurdenev, CEO of NIS, members of the Government of the Republic of Serbia, representatives of the local authorities of the Town of Pančevo and many other invitees. Kirill Tyurdenev, CEO of NIS Kirill Tyurdenev, CEO of NIS, stated the following at the ceremony at the Pančevo Oil Refinery, “The implementation of the Bottom of the Barrel Project with a delayed coking technology is a new milestone in the development of NIS and an essential step towards further modernisation of the Pančevo Oil Refinery. This project is significant for the entire petroleum sector in Serbia, as well. By developing its processing capacities and implementing modern technologies, NIS will remain the leader in the very demanding and competitive regional market of petroleum products. I am convinced that, owing to a successful cooperation between the two key shareholders, Gazprom Neft and Government of the Republic of Serbia, we will continue to develop NIS and provide others with a model of both operational efficiency and adherence to sustainable development principles.” Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić Over €300 million will be invested in the Bottom of the Barrel Project, one of the largest investments in Serbia in the next few years. The construction of the plant, which has been planned to complete in Quarter 3, 2019, will put NIS’s processing complex among the most modern ones in Europe. The main designer and the company managing construction is the international company CB&I. Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić stated at the ceremony, “I would like to thank Gazprom Neft for the enormous effort and energy which they have been putting in for 3 years now together with the Serbian part of NIS to work out a plan and make an agreement on how to go ahead with the bottom of the barrel process. It has been discussed for many years which best methodology and technology to apply. Here we are at the construction site today and we expect excellent results of the bottom of the barrel processing in 2 years. Up to this point, NIS’s investments have ensured that we have the finest fuel in this part of Europe, which you may recognise when you travel for a holiday, you may notice that the quality of petrol and diesel in Serbia is much better than in the neighbouring countries. It is important for every person in Serbia to know that the purpose of the bottom of the barrel processing is to ensure further development and progress of our country and that we are going to have huge economic and environmental benefits, which will make Serbia stand out even more among the countries in the region with a substantial portion of investments.” Alexander Dyukov, Chairman of the Management Board of Gazprom Neft “We are turning a new page in the history of the development of NIS. By launching the Bottom of the Barrel Project at the Pančevo Oil Refinery, we are entering the second stage of the process of modernising this complex. The first stage in the modernisation process has made it possible for this refinery to join the leading ones in Europe in this field. When the second stage is completed, this refinery in Pančevo will rank equal with the refineries across the globe, since we will have the depth of processing at 99%,” said Alexander Dyukov, Chairman of the Management Board of Gazprom Neft and added, “Since 2009, we have already invested over €2.5 billion in development. This has made it possible for NIS to become one of the energy leaders in this region. The launch of this project reaffirms the seriousness of the Government of Serbia and our side’s intentions regarding the development of this company. Gazprom Neft will continue investing in NIS.” Through the Bottom of the Barrel Project, NIS is continuing the trend of constantly making its facilities and work process up-to-date in order to be able to supply the market with top-quality fuels. The new facilities will provide for an optimal use of capacities at the Pančevo Oil Refinery and increase in the processing efficiency to 99.2 percent from the current 86 percent. This, in turn, will lead to an increase in the production of high-quality petrol and diesel and mark the beginning of producing coke, a product that our country has imported so far. At the same time, this is how NIS will continue to improve the energy stability of the Republic of Serbia. Aleksandar Antić, Serbian Minister of Mining and Energy Aleksandar Antić, Serbian Minister of Mining and Energy, pointed out that investing in the construction of the bottom of the barrel plant will be conducive to the security and sustainability of Naftna Industrija Srbije, while at the same time ensuring smooth oil operations, which is of extreme importance to our economy, domestic product and Serbia in general. By implementing the project, NIS is also going to keep on investing in improving environmental protection, given the fact that, once the Bottom of the Barrel processing starts, requirements will be met to stop producing heavy fuel oil with a high sulphur content. At the same time, this will make it possible for Serbia to fulfil its international obligations in terms of limiting the use of fuel with a high sulphur content. Igor Mirović, Prime Minister of the Government of Vojvodina Province Igor Mirović, Prime Minister of the Government of Vojvodina Province, said that the Bottom of the Barrel Project is important both in terms of its technological essence and its future effects, as the more up-to-date Refinery facilities in Pančevo will generate a higher profit, a part of which will belong to the Republic of Serbia and the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina and will target all aspects of its development. Alexander Chepurin, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Serbia, stated, “NIS is one of the most important companies within the framework of cooperation between Serbia and Russia. On this note, I would like to emphasise that it is a joint Russian and Serbian company. I believe there are three main reasons for such good cooperation between the two companies: technological cooperation in the first place, followed by the fact that Gazprom Neft has a strong fundamental technological base for international cooperation. Another crucial point is that we have established very good cooperation both at an operating level and at a political level with the government authorities and regional actors.” Through the Bottom of the Barrel Project, NIS is continuing the trend of constantly making its facilities and work process up-to-date The investment in the Bottom of the Barrel Project represents continuation of developing the Pančevo Oil Refinery. The first stage in modernising the Refinery involved constructing new plants and reconstructing the existing ones. The key project in that stage of developing NIS’s processing capacities was the construction of the Mild Hydrocracking and Hydrotreating (MHC/DHT) complex, which involves the secondary processing of crude oil. The commissioning of the complex in 2012 made domestic production of Euro 5 fuel possible. Over €540 million was invested in the first stage of modernising the Pančevo Oil Refinery.