Russia Accused of ‘Blackmail’ by Europe As It Cuts Off Gas

Russia has been accused of “blackmail” after it halted gas exports to Poland and Bulgaria, signaling that the Ukraine war will impression Europe’s energy materials.

Russian energy big Gazprom introduced Wednesday it would cease exporting gas to Poland and Bulgaria right after they refused to fork out for the fuel in roubles, a demand President Vladimir Putin has produced to “unfriendly” nations following his invasion of Ukraine.

European Commission main Ursula von der Leyen claimed the transfer was “unjustified and unacceptable” and the European Union (EU) would enact a contingency strategy to locate the fuel from other suppliers.

She said there would be a co-ordinated EU reaction and that the bloc “will also keep on doing the job with global companions to safe different flows.”

Yamal pipeline
A see of giant tubes portion of 1 of the physical exit points and compressor gas station of the Yamal–Europe gas pipeline on February 19, 2022 in Wloclawek, Poland. Russia has declared it would stop fuel exports to Poland and Bulgaria in excess of the countries’ refusal to fork out for provides in roubles.
Omar Marques/Getty Images

“Europeans can rely on our total support,” she extra.

The cutoff will have an affect on deliveries of Russian fuel to Poland by the Yamal-Europe pipeline and to Bulgaria through the TurkStream pipeline.

Polish Deputy Overseas Minister Marcin Przdacz claimed his place would look to other companions, these kinds of as the U.S. and Gulf nations, to fulfill its fuel requirements.

“I’m fairly sure that we will handle to cope with this,” he instructed the BBC.

Meanwhile, Poland’s local climate minister, Anna Moskwa, mentioned there would be no need to consider from reserves and that a contingency plan experienced been in spot to lessen reliance on Russian electrical power.

“There will be no lack of gas in Polish households,” she mentioned.

Bulgarian Electricity Minister Alexander Nikolov accused Russia of utilizing fuel as a “political and financial weapon.”

The EU has rejected in theory Putin’s desire for payment in rubles but with deadlines looming other EU governments will have to determine no matter if to take the conditions or shed supplies and confront rationing. European fuel price ranges jumped by 17 percent soon after Wednesday’s information.

Katja Yafimava, senior study fellow at the Oxford Institute for Electricity Scientific studies instructed Newsweek that the European sector “will come to be increasingly nervous” about whether or not other nations will encounter equivalent cuts in the coming weeks.

“My contention is that any EU nation which will not shell out in line with the new payment method, or will not protected an exemption from the Russian govt…is possible to see its materials minimize. “

“In the interim, it is likely that buyers will nominate better volumes on their Gazprom contracts while supplies continue to profit from the cost differential,” she said.

Putin’s decree necessitates organizations to established up two accounts. 1 would be in a overseas currency and the other in rubles with Gazprombank, which would change the payments into the Russian currency to be transferred to Gazprom PJSC.

On the other hand, other nations that have refused Moscow’s phrases these kinds of as Austria and Germany, ended up continuing to receive their gasoline supplies as ordinary, the BBC reported.

The only EU country to meet Putin’s desire is Hungary, whose president, Viktor Orban, is a Putin ally.

Newsweek has contacted Gazprom for remark,

Update 27/04/22, 7:02 a.m. EDT: This post has been up-to-date with even more information and remark.