Russia fills its coffers with high energy prices, says report | War in Ukraine

Russia fills its coffers thanks to high energy prices, report highlights | War in Ukraine

A refinery of Russian oil producer Lukoil on April 26, 2022 in Volgograd, Russia.

Russia earned $206 billion in revenue from fossil fuel exports in six months of war, profiting from high prices, according to the report of an independent research center published on Tuesday, which calls for more effective sanctions.

Soaring fossil fuel prices mean that Russia's current revenues are well above those of previous years despite reductions in export volumes, says the report by the Center for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA), based in Finland.

Gas prices soared to historic levels in Europe while those of oil soared at the start of the war before falling more recently.

Fossil fuel exports are estimated to have contributed $56 billion to the Russian federal budget, helping to fund war crimes in Ukraine, the authors calculated.

These figures were estimated for the first six months of the war following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, from February 24 to August 24.

Over this period, the CREA estimates that the first importer of Russian fossil fuels was the European Union (for 111 billion dollars), followed by China and Turkey .

The EU has decided on a gradual embargo on its imports of petroleum and petroleum products. It has also already ended its coal purchases, but Russian gas, on which it is very dependent, is not affected for the moment.

The research center believes, however, that the European coal embargo – implemented on August 10 – has paid off, with Russian exports having since fallen to their lowest level since the invasion of the Russian Federation. ;Ukraine. Russia failed to find other buyers, write the report's authors.

The CREA, on the other hand, considers that stronger rules must be put in place to prevent Russian oil from entering markets on which it is supposed to be prohibited. Western sanctions are now too easily circumvented, he said.

EU must ban use of European ships and ports to ship Russian oil to third countries, he says . The United Kingdom is also called upon to ban the participation of its insurance sector in such international transport.

For their part, the G7 countries decided on Friday to urgently cap the price of Russian oil, a complex mechanism to put in place and intended to deal a new blow to the energy windfall of Moscow.

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