Sergei Grigoryev, vice president of Russia's state-owned pipeline operator Transneft, has reportedly claimed that Russian oil deliveries to Germany have been cut by approximately one third in recent weeks, and has blamed Russian oil major Lukoil for the cuts, the Associated Press has reported.

Mr Grigoryev has reportedly claimed that the fall in oil deliveries has nothing to do with repairs to the Druzhba pipeline that carries Russian oil to Germany, but is in fact the fault of Lukoil and several of its smaller Russian counterparts, the publication revealed. As yet, the reason for the supply shortfall is unknown.

The Associated Press revealed that, although an anonymous Lukoil spokesman refused to comment, he did say that the company would be making a public statement on the matter shortly. Thompson Financial cited Mr Grigoryev as saying: Lukoil is not commenting on this situation and will provide an answer to this issue in a few days.

According to the Associated Press, the cut in oil supplies has significantly impacted upon the operations of the Schwedt oil refinery in Germany, which is jointly owned by BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Agip and Total. The publication revealed that a spokesman said that oil deliveries had been dropping since July.

Despite the disruptions in oil deliveries, the plant in eastern Germany is reported to be working at full capacity by using its own supplies. According to the Associated Press, the German refinery has an annual processing capacity of some 10 billion tons, equivalent to around 10% of Germany’s capacity.