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US and UK ban Russian oil and gas imports; Europe reluctant

The United States and the United Kingdom have announced a ban on Russian oil, gas, and imports, while the European Union has pledged to reduce its reliance on Russian gas.

“We are banning all imports of Russian oil and gas and energy,” said US President Joe Biden adding “that means Russian oil will no longer be acceptable to US ports. It will deal another powerful blow to Putin’s war machine.”

“This decision was taken ‘in close coordination’ with the US allies,” he added. “We will not contribute to the financing of Putin’s war,” he said.

Europe is currently refusing to impose an embargo on Russian oil and gas imports, which account for 30% and 40% of the continent’s needs, respectively.

The United States exports energy resources, that is, it produces more oil and gas than it consumes, Biden reminded. “We can make that decision, while others cannot,” he explained.

The United Kingdom announced yesterday that it will stop importing Russian oil and petroleum products by the end of 2022, giving the market and businesses enough time to find alternatives. Oil imports from Russia account for 8% of the country’s total demand.

“The government will also work with the companies through a new ‘Oil Impact Force’ to support them at this time to find alternative providers,” said Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy Kwasi Kwarteng.

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