The leaders of the member countries of the European Union came to an agreement late last night on the sixth package of sanctions against the Russian Federation. It provides for a partial embargo on the import of Russian oil and the disconnection of Sberbank from the SWIFT system.
Charles Michel, head of the European Council, tweeted:
“An agreement to ban the export of Russian oil to EU covers more than two-thirds of Russia’s imports, cutting off a huge source of funding for its war machine. Maximum pressure on Russia to end the war.”
Oil supplied by sea turned out to be sanctioned. Imports via the Druzhba pipeline, on which Hungary is too dependent, have been abandoned for the time being. It was because of this country that it was so difficult to achieve a full embargo. At the final press conference, Charles Michel stressed that the decision on the import of Russian oil through pipelines is temporary.
The summit also decided to disconnect Sberbank (the largest Russian bank) from the SWIFT system of interbank payments and ban the operation of three more Russian state media in the EU:
“This package of sanctions includes other tough measures: disconnecting the largest Russian bank Sberbank from SWIFT, banning three more Russian state broadcasters and imposing sanctions on those responsible for war crimes in Ukraine.”
Ursula von der Leyen, head of the European Commission and the initiator of the sixth round of sanctions, said that the European Union plans to abandon 90% of oil imports from Russia by the end of the year.
The head of the European Commission also said that the EU is working on providing Ukraine with assistance in the amount of 9 billion euros – to cover its current liquidity needs. As previously reported, part of the assistance will be in the form of grants, and part – in the form of concessional loans. It is not yet known what this ratio will be and what sources the EU intends to use.