The European Union agrees to a comprehensive ban on Russian oil

The stated goal is to cut off funding for Moscow’s war in Ukraine. The heads of state and government of the European Union, meeting at the Brussels summit, on the evening of Monday, May 30, agreed on a gradual ban on two-thirds of Europe’s purchases of Russian oil.

This compromise concerns ship-borne oil. In detail, the ban should apply to crude oil within six months and refined products within eight months. After Berlin and Warsaw pledged to stop their imports via the Druzhba pipeline, 90% of Russian oil exports to the European Union will be stopped by the end of the year, European Commission President Ursula von der LeyenFrench President Emmanuel Macron.

Russia chooses to continue its war in Ukraine. As Europeans, united and in solidarity with the Ukrainian people, we are imposing new sanctions tonight.”Macron, whose country holds the presidency of the Council of the European Union, tweeted.

“You’re going to cut off a huge source of funding from the war machine.” Russian and practice “max pressure” on Moscow for inciting it to end the war, European Council President Charles Michel tweeted.

Earlier today, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, via video call, called on European Union leaders to quickly agree to adopt the sixth package of sanctions against Moscow, of which the oil embargo was the most important point. Disagreements in Europe must end (…)Europe must show its strength. Because Russia only understands the argument of force.Ukrainian leader said.

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persuading Hungary

The European Union introduced a temporary exemption for pipeline oil, in order to lift Budapest’s veto. After that, it will be discussed extending the ban to include pipeline deliveries. ” As soon as possible “.

Budapest had conditioned its green light on guarantees of its supplies. On reaching the summit, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban demanded guarantees in the event of a cut in the Druzhba pipeline that feeds his country through Ukraine. And he demanded that his country be able to supply Russian oil by sea if pipeline access was stopped. “This is the guarantee we need.”Mr. Urban was fired. Hungary, a landlocked country with no access to the sea, depends for 65% of its consumption on oil transported by Druzhba. It had opposed the initial proposal to impose a ban unless it took advantage of a period of at least four years to implement it, and about 800 million euros in European funding to adapt its refineries.

MI von der Leyen estimated that the capacity of the Adria pipeline, which also supplies Hungary through Croatia, could be increased with a delay. “About forty-five to sixty days” And the “investments”which you have not encrypted.

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Unanimity is required to adopt sanctions. The political green light from leaders should lead to an agreement ratified at the level of the 27 ambassadors to iron out the details before the measures can take effect. Negotiations will then take place to stop imports via Druzhba (a third of European supplies), whose northern branch serves Germany, Austria and Poland, and the southern branch serves Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

But for Moscow, it is easier to find other buyers of its exports by tanker than by pipeline. However, some member states fear that the exemption for pipeline supplies could distort the terms of competition for oil purchases.

Russia’s Sberbank has been excluded from the SWIFT system

The new sanctions package is also under negotiation for a month, and also provides for the extension of the EU blacklist to include about sixty personalities, including the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill. It includes the exclusion of three Russian banks from the international financial system Swift, including Sberbank, the country’s main institution. So far, seven Russian institutions have been denied access to Swift, a secure messaging platform that allows vital operations such as interbank money transfer orders.

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The leaders also agreed to give 9 billion euros to the Ukrainian government to cover its immediate cash needs in order to run its economy. Kyiv has set its needs at $5 billion per month (about 4.65 billion euros). European funding will take the form of “long term loans” A European source said interest rates are being supported.

The two-day summit is scheduled to deal, on Tuesday, with the consequences of the war-related food crisis and the energy transition on the continent to dispense with Russian gas.

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The world with AFP

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