Blow to Putin as Europe breaks free of Russian oil for good

Blow to Putin as Europe breaks free of Russian oil for good

The Telegraph reports:

Western Europe has broken free of direct Russian oil imports for good in a blow to Vladimir Putin, research by the European energy consultancy Rystad suggests.

Analysts found that the UK and much of Europe have reversed a years-long rise in reliance on Russian oil and gas before the Ukraine conflict, shifting instead to other suppliers such as the US and Canada.

Jorge Leon, Rystad’s senior vice president for oil markets, said: “I think people underestimated how flexible the energy system is.

“Just before the war, just the idea of, we’re going to stop buying oil and gas directly from Russia, would have been crazy. But it has largely happened.”

According to Eurostat, in 2020 imports from Russia made up 39pc of the gas used in the European Union, 23pc of oil imports and 46pc of coal imports.

The UK relied on Russia for about 30pc of its diesel, 27pc of its coal and up to 10pc of its gas – which arrived partly on ships as liquid natural gas (LNG) and partly via trans-European pipelines.

On official figures this has now fallen to practically zero.

It is thought that quantities of Russian fossil fuel have still been arriving via refineries in other countries, although Mr Leon – who will be speaking at International Energy Week in London this week – said that the overall amounts are still diminishing.

Mr Leon said the key to breaking Russian dominance had been a surge in supply from other sources which were also outside Opec, the cartel of mainly Middle Eastern countries to control supply and prices. [Continue reading…]

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