A delegation of representatives of the Serbian Ministry of Mining and Energy, the Market Inspection of the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia and the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of the University of Belgrade participated in a three-day peer review visit to the Czech Republic, in the framework of the project: „Capacity Building for an Improved Mineral Fuel Quality Monitoring (FQM) System – Transfer of Best Practices against Grey Economy (FUELPAGE) “.

FUELPAGE is co-financed in the framework of the CEI Know-How Exchange Programme - ITALY, sponsored by the CEI Fund at the EBRD entirely financed by Italy. The CEI grant amounts to 17,445 EUR out of a total project cost of 48,100 EUR.

The peer review programme was tailored in accordance with the topics of highest interest to the Serbian beneficiary institutions, led by the Serbian ministry in charge of trade and market inspection as the main know-how beneficiary. All topics of interest have been raised and identified during the first months of fuel quality monitoring activities conducted in Serbia, where FQM regulatory acts were introduced on 1 December 2015, as part of harmonisation of the national legislation with the EU acquis communautaire.

In accordance with  the visit programme the Czech Ministry of Industry and Trade presented the system of the Czech fuel quality monitoring and reporting system.  After that, the Czech Market Inspection outlined their operations and inspection procedures related to sampling of petroleum products, in line with their competences for supervising fuel quality specifications as defined in European quality standards. The visit was followed by a meeting with the Ministry and Finance and Customs Administration of the Czech Republic in charge of controlling excise products and collecting  excise taxes among other competences, where they presented projects in place and those envisaged to be introduced.

As project goals foresee not only experience exchange on FQM and reporting to the European Commission, in line with Directive 98/70/EC and its subsequent amendments, but also best practices in the fight against grey economy in the petroleum sector, the visit programme was extended with an Experience Exchange Forum on Marking of Petroleum Products. Within the forum, representatives of Serbian Ministry of Mining and Energy and Ministry in charge of trade and market inspection presented the benefits of this national programme in Serbia on the strengthening of legal flows and securing fair competition on the Serbian petroleum market. The presentation drew significant attention among Czech institutions and was attended by representatives of the Czech Customs Administration, Market Inspection, Ministry of Finance and Czech SGS.

The visit to one of the largest fuel stations in Prague included hands-on presentation of the FQM procedures with a simultaneous regular inspection visit of Czech Market Inspection to the fuel station and presentation of sampling procedure by a market inspector. In addition, a presentation on an SGS mobile laboratory was made, as well as on additional quality control activities run by commercial subjects in the Czech Republic according to the „Seal of Quality“ programme.

The peer review programme ended with a visit to a fuel terminal of Čepro a.s., the state-owned company for transport, storage (incl. State reserves) and sale of petroleum products in the Czech Republic.

The participants from institutions both from the Czech Republic and from Serbia have identified solid grounds for maintaining and further strengthening cooperation in the fields of mutual interest in the future.

Meeting with the Czech Customs Administration and Experience Exchange Forum on Marking of Petroleum Products

Detailed sampling and sample analysis presentation at Benzina fuel station in Prague

Delegation of the beneficiary group from Serbia in front of Serbian Embassy in Prague

Detailed presentation on Czech FQM inspection and sampling procedures at Benzina fuel station in Prague