Germany tallies risks as it weighs Rosneft refinery seizure

By Victor Jack | 02/20/2024 06:38 AM EST

Berlin faces the prospect of supply cuts and a huge payout to the Kremlin if it moves to expropriate Rosneft’s assets.

German leaders are facing a dire predicament over what to do about a critical refinery in northeastern Germany that is majority-owned by Kremlin-controlled Rosneft.

The German government is weighing the seizure of the PCK refinery in the town of Schwedt, 120 kilometers from Berlin. The refinery alone satisfies half of Eastern Germany’s fuel needs and provides 11 percent of the country’s total supplies.

In light of the refinery’s importance, nationalizing it would secure the country’s long-term energy needs and would help it avoid supply disruptions that could shock the country’s already ailing economy.


Berlin has placed PCK under a temporary government trusteeship that could be extended. That option, however, would leave the Kremlin in control of a vital piece of Germany’s energy infrastructure, making it next to impossible for Germans to ensure the supply of crude to the refinery in future.