Difficult equation turns out to be Europe the reaching an agreement for imposing an embargo on Russian oil.
The decision provides for the abolition of the supply of Russian crude oil within the next six months and refined by the end of the year, however at least four countries have requested either to be excluded or to have a transitional period of two or even three years.
In order to reach an agreement, the European Commission amended its proposalto offer extension period for Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republictwo European sources told Reuters.
Under the amended proposal, Hungary and Slovakia will continue to be able to purchase Russian oil from pipelines until the end of 2024, while the Czech Republic will be able to continue supplying Russian oil until June 2024, provided it does not oil was supplied via a pipeline from southern Europe, the sources clarified.
Because Bulgaria was not excluded
Exceptions were also requested by Bulgariabut was not listened to because, as a European official stated “Had no real argument” He added that the other three countries “had an objective problem”.
Proposal to extend the transition period before the imposition of a worldwide ban on Russian oil to EU shipping providers responds to the concerns expressed by Greecethe Malta and Cyprus for impact of the measure on their shipping companiessaid an official.
According to the original proposal presented on Wednesday by the European Commission, the Shipping companies Union should stop offering shipping, shipping, insurance and financial services to transport Russian oil to the world in a one-month transition period.
“Red line” for Austria the embargo on Russian gas
THE Austrian Economy Minister Margaret Srabek warned the European Union against a possible embargo on Russian gas imports, citing its “red line”, whose dependence reaches 80%.
“We must not send any message in the direction of an embargo on gas if we know we can not stand it – and neither we nor Germany can bear it. “The gas embargo is a clear red line for Austria.” said Mrs. Schrabek in the newspapers of the Funke Group.
The Austrian Minister of Economy also stressed that Germany can not count on gas deliveries from Austrian storage facilities, although Austria is “one of the few countries in Europe whose storage capacity exceeds the same needs”. In Heidach, near Salzburg, he explained, there is a gas storage facility exclusively for German needs. The plant is owned by Russia’s Gazprom, but is currently empty and “this is not going to change any time soon,” Ms. Srabek said.
The question about Vienna, the minister continued, is “who will pay to fill the storage tanks, if the European Union decides to do so”, and stressed that “Austrian taxpayers’ money can be used to meet Austrian needs, but not to buy gas for Germany, France or the Netherlands. ” At present, she said, her government is focusing on “storage for domestic use”, with the aim of increasing the stock from the current 18% to 80%.
Austria, however, assured Margaret Srabek, is making an effort to get rid of Russian gas. “But with current dependence at 80%, this will not happen soon,” he acknowledged, calling for fracking to be promoted in Europe. “We must not close our minds and argue with the technological situation that existed 20 years ago. “Technology has evolved,” he said, referring to methods of promoting shale gas in an environmentally friendly way, and called for new partnerships in the medium term, for example with Saudi Arabia on solar and hydraulic energy.
What is included in the 6th package of sanctions
– First, the European Commission proposes the additional inclusion in the blacklist of sanctions, officials and other persons involved in the war crimes in Boutsa, but also those responsible for the “inhuman” scenes in the city of Mariupol, as said Ursula von der Layen. “This is another message to the Kremlin perpetrators: we know who you are, we will hold you accountable and you will not escape,” he added.
– Secondly, the 6th package of sanctions includes the exclusion of additional important Russian banks, including the Russian bank Sberbank, the largest bank in Russia, which holds about 37% of the Russian banking sector. “We are hitting banks that are systemically important to the Russian financial system and to Putin’s ability to sow disaster,” she said.
Thirdly, following the ban on Sputnik and RT, three more Russian news channels are banned from broadcasting in the EU. “They are no longer allowed to broadcast their content in the EU, either by satellite or via the internet. “These channels are the mouthpiece of Putin’s false news and propaganda, and we must not take them further,” said Ursula von der Leyen.
Fourth, the Kremlin relies on accountants and consultants from Europe and that will stop. These services will no longer be provided in Russia.
Fifth, after the ban on Russian coal today, imports of Russian oil will be gradually banned. “It will not be easy, because some member states are dependent on Russian oil, but it is something that needs to be done,” Ursula von der Leyen admitted. It is proposed to ban Russian oil from Europe, with a complete ban on imports by sea and through pipelines of refined and crude oil. This will be done gradually, within 6 months for crude oil and by the end of the year for refined products, in order to “reduce the impact on the world market”, said the President of the Commission. “This will maximize the pressure on Russia, while at the same time minimizing collateral damage to us and to the world,” he added.
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