European embargo on Russian oil ‘will take months’

“If Russia sells the oil rejected by the Europeans to other buyers, the sanction will be useless,” a European source also warns.

The European Union is preparing to stop buying oil from Russia to sanction the war in Ukraine, but the measure is “complex» and will take «several months“Several European sources told AFP on Friday. “The adoption of measures related to oil requires the termination of existing contracts, the search for alternatives and the avoidance of circumventing them. It won’t happen overnight. It will take at least several months‘ explained a European official involved in the discussions.

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The Commission is considering options“, he said. Including the transfer of payments to a blocked account.”Restricting demand will raise prices‘ stressed several ministers and senior officials interviewed by AFP. “The United States is very sensitive to oil pricessaid one of them.

Moreover, if Russia sells the oil rejected by the Europeans to other buyers, the sanction will be useless.another warned. Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday called for a diversification of outlets to supply Russia’s energy resources.to other regions of the world that really need it“. The Europeans are trying to prevent China and India from circumventing their sanctions and have made it clear to them that “difficult for the EU to accept partners who evade sanctions“, specified a European diplomat.

Stop Russian coal purchases

On April 8, the EU decided to stop buying coal from Russia, to close its ports to Russian ships and to ban the export of many goods and technologies. “For the first time, Europe touched on the subject of energy, which was not easy. Oil and gas will follow‘ said one of the officers.

But you have to “maintain unitybetween the 27, he insisted. Hungary, Slovakia and Bulgaria buy their oil from Russia and it takes “Convince them to keep them on board‘ he underscored. “We cannot end our addiction overnightSlovakian Foreign Minister Ivan Korcok warned.

New sanctions were discussed at the meeting of EU foreign ministers on April 11. “The European Union spends hundreds of millions of euros to import oil from Russia, which certainly helps finance this war. We must put an end to this, even if it brings with it enormous challenges and problemssaid Irishman Simon Coveney. “Nothing is taboo“, replied the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, considering that”Oil is easier to replace“.

Russia exports two thirds of its oil to the EU. In 2021, it provided 30% of crude oil and 15% of petroleum products bought by the EU. “Russia’s oil import bill was four times that of gas, $80 billion versus $20 billion‘ Josep Borrell recalled.


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