By the year end, Brussels wants to end oil imports from Russia

BRUSSELS (Parliament Politics Magazine) – The European Commission’s president, Ursula von der Leyen, revealed a proposal today to impose an EU-wide embargo on Russian oil imports, which are one of Moscow’s key revenue sources.

The embargo will be methodical and progressive, with member nations having up to six months to phase out Russian crude purchases and to stop buying all refined oil products until the year end.

All Russian oil traded via pipelines and ports will be subject to the prohibition.

To be clear: it was not going to be easy. Some EU members were heavily reliant on Russian oil. But all they had to do now was work on it ” Von der Leyen stated when she spoke on Wednesday before the European Parliament.

They put the most pressure on Russia while limiting collateral damage to themselves and their allies across the world. Because, in order to assist Ukraine, their own economy must remain robust, she added.

The oil embargo, which is part of the EU’s sixth package of sanctions, is the most severe sanction the bloc has placed on Russia since the conflict in Ukraine began on February 24th, and is capable of depriving the Kremlin of one of its most reliable income sources.

As a result of the war, the European economy has already entered a phase of deceleration and record-breaking inflation, and the dramatic move threatens to further destabilise it.

The European Union is Russia’s largest oil customer, purchasing over 3.5 million barrels of crude and processed products each day. Last year, the EU spent over €73 billion on Russian oil, the highest amount spent on fossil fuels by a significant margin.

Von der Leyen’s statement comes after days of intense behind-the-scenes diplomacy between the representatives of member states, some of whom are concerned about the economic consequences of the policy and the executive.

Given the global interconnectedness of oil markets, the move from Brussels may easily have ramifications beyond Europe, affecting middle- and low-income countries along the way.

Ambassadors will discuss the embargo further in the following days, and it will only take effect after unanimous agreement and publishing in the EU’s official journal.

Germany has played an important role in the decision-making process, having lately dropped its resistance after successfully reducing its reliance on Russian oil from 35% before the war to 12% in May.

Following two months of work, he could conclude that Germany was not opposed to a Russian oil embargo.  Of course, it was a big burden to carry, but they were ready, Germany’s vice-chancellor and economy minister, Robert Habeck, told reporters on Monday.

He explained that they had to prepare the hubs, they had to prepare the pipes.” So, time was beneficial, but other countries had bigger problems.

Germany is among the nations connected to Russia’s state-controlled company Transneft’s Druzhba pipeline, which also connects Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Austria.

According to diplomatic sources consulted by Euronews, Hungary and Slovakia expressed concerns about the ban’s damaging effects on their economies during negotiations. The two countries, which are both heavily reliant on Russian oil, have lobbied for an extra year to finish the phase-out.

According to Euronews, Greece, Italy and Austria underlined the importance of having enough time to change their energy supply networks, while Greece, Cyprus, Malta, Greece, the Netherlands and Belgium warned of potential economic losses for their local shipping sectors.

Poland, on the other hand, insisted on imposing a full embargo on both gas and oil imports, a situation that would almost certainly result in a deep recession across the continent.

They were robbing Russia of its opportunity to modernise and diversify its economy. Putin wanted Ukraine to be erased from the map. Clearly, he would not succeed, said von der Leyen

Ukraine, on the other hand, had risen in unity. And he was drowning in his own nation, Russia, she added.

Ashton Perry

Ashton Perry is a former Birmingham BSc graduate professional with six years critical writing experience. With specilisations in journalism focussed writing on climate change, politics, buisness and other news. A passionate supporter of environmentalism and media freedom, Ashton works to provide everyone with unbiased news.