MOSCOW (Reuters) - Rosneft will increase jet fuel supply to Russian airlines at Crimea's Simferopol airport, it said on Thursday, part of attempts to replace the region's fuel supplies that had come from Ukraine.
Russian companies have been cautious about entering Crimea, wary of a possible backlash from the West, which has already imposed some sanctions, mostly visa bans, on several Russians -including Rosneft's head Igor Sechin.
Rosneft, Russia's top oil producer, said its subsidiary, RN-Aero, had signed contracts to supply fuel to Transaero, VIM-AVIA, Atlas-Jet and Nordavia, but did not disclose volumes or financial details.
Before annexation, Crimea received the vast majority of its fuel, such as gasoline and diesel, from Ukraine by rail and truck shipments, which have now largely ground to a halt.
Shipping and trade sources say Russia has not yet been able to compensate for the loss by shipping gasoline and diesel into Crimea through the small oil port of Kerch on the east of the peninsula.
Several international companies, such as McDonald’s, have closed their businesses in Crimea, while Deutsche Post announced that it was no longer accepting letters bound for the region as delivery to there was no longer guaranteed, after Russia’s annexed the region in March.
Rosneft became Russia's top jet fuel supplier last year when it acquired Anglo-Russian oil firm TNK-BP. The Kremlin-controlled company supplied over 3.2 million tonnes of the fuel in 2013.
(Reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin, editing by William Hardy)