INA-MOL's regional ambitions
Conquering the markets of southeastern Europe is a big strategic goal for INA and MOL. INA was the dominant oil company in the former Yugoslavia and seeks to recapture this position. With Austria's OMV establishing a leading position in the Romanian market, conquering the former Yugoslav markets is more important to INA-MOL as regional consolidation in the oil industry continues.
The region has attractive growth prospects, with GDP growing much faster than in the EU and a ratio of cars to population less than half the EU's. This indicates long-term potential as car numbers converge towards the European average.
"INA cannot remain a company exclusively within Croatia's borders," says Croatian vice-president Damir Polancec. "Therefore I give my full support to INA's efforts to expand and it is natural that the major chance for that is on the markets of the former Yugoslavia. The major investment in the refineries will certainly enhance the quality of finished products and give INA a situation where it has a comparative advantage vis-à-vis other companies in the area of former Yugoslavia."
Neighbouring Bosnia Herzegovina (BiH) has no significant refining capacity and is therefore dependent on imports of oil derivatives.