Russia’s war in Ukraine: the European Commission proposes an oil embargo

Status: 04.05.2022 02:45

For weeks, the EU has been discussing the possibility of managing an oil embargo against Russia. The European Commission is now giving a clear answer. It is now up to the Member States.

Companies from Germany and other EU countries should no longer be allowed to import Russian oil in the future. This is what the European Commission and the European External Action Service are proposing for a new sanctions package against Russia, as several media outlets have reported.

In order to give countries time to transition, there should be transition periods. Specifically, according to the information, it is expected that after a six-month phase-out phase, a crude oil import ban will apply and after an eight-month phase-out phase, there will be will also have an import ban on petroleum products. It should also play a role whether deliveries are made by pipeline or ship.

According to the information, significant exemptions are planned only for Hungary and Slovakia. These two EU countries still derive a large part of their oil needs from Russia today and, due to a lack of access to the sea, do not see themselves in a position to develop alternative sources of supply as quickly as possible. ‘other countries.

Janis Kluge, Russia specialist at Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, on the impact of sanctions imposed on Russia

daily topics 10:15 p.m., May 3, 2022

New sanctions against companies and individuals

In addition to the oil embargo, the proposal of the responsible European institutions also includes new sanctions against companies, according to information from dpa. These include Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank, as well as two other banks and TV stations that deliberately broadcast misinformation about the war on Ukraine. Banks should no longer be able to use the international financial reporting system Swift.

Actors responsible for Russian atrocities in Ukrainian towns such as Bucha and Mariupol must be added to the EU’s list of people and organizations whose assets must be frozen.

For the planned sanctions to come into force, the approval of the governments of the 27 EU countries is now required. Therefore, their permanent representatives in Brussels want to start consultations this Wednesday. If there are no more major objections from the capitals, the embargo could then be decided in the next few days.

Habeck expects “price jumps”

EU citizens could bear significant additional costs, in particular due to the oil embargo. Federal Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) expects significant “price jumps”. One of the reasons is that Russian oil must be replaced by probably more expensive alternatives from other countries. In addition, the conversion of refineries and delivery routes represents efforts and costs. But hardly anyone dares to predict when and to what extent refueling or heating will become more expensive.

The new sanctions package is the sixth launched by the European Commission and the European External Action Service (EEAS). The economic punitive measures are primarily aimed at helping to deprive Russia of the financial resources needed to continue the war of aggression against Ukraine.

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