Polish oil refiner PKN Orlen is to increase its monthly purchase of crude oil from Saudi Aramco from 300,000 tonnes to 400,000.

The company said that the reason behind the decision was diversifying the range of suppliers and strengthening relations with Saudi Aramco, with which it has been partnered since 2016.

PKN Orlen president of the management board Daniel Obajtek said: “We are strengthening our position in the Gulf region, strengthening our relations with our proven partner from Saudi Arabia.”

“This is another step on the road to securing the operation of our installations throughout the group and increasing Poland’s energy security.”

The company said diversifying the supply has led to an increase in crude oil coming from outside of Russia.

The Kremlin has recently been in the news because of its oil-related tensions with Belarus that resulted in Moscow suspending and re-establishing supplies at the beginning of the month.

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By GlobalData

According to Warsaw-based consultancy firm Esperis, PKN Orlen’s choice to diversify its suppliers is not directly related to the regional situation but is part of a broader economic plan.

Esperis oil and gas analyst Mateusz Kubiak told Offshore Technology: “PKN Orlen’s decision to increase purchases from Saudi Aramco represents part of a broader strategy of the Polish company aimed at diversifying crude oil supplies, expanding ties with partners from outside Russia. That is not only Saudi Arabia but other countries too, such as Angola and Nigeria.

“PKN’s decision should not be viewed as a result of current oil crisis between Russia and Belarus as there is no direct connection between these issues, as Russian oil supplies to Poland are being performed on market basis, differently from the case of Belarus.”

Offshore Technology has approached PKN Orlen and Saudi Aramco for comment.