By Ruth Tene Natsa, Abuja
Razom We Stand has appealed to the European Commission to introduce an embargo on Russian LNG in the 12th package of sanctions.
The Group says the introduction of an embargo against Russian LNG, as well as secondary sanctions aimed at stopping the Arctic LNG-2 project, is an obviously necessary step that the EU must take to support its declared policy in the areas of international security and climate action.
Razom We Stand noted that since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine until July 2023, EU countries have imported about $20 billion worth of Russian LNG.
Quoting official statements published on March 9, 2023, which stated that “ Russia plans to almost triple its LNG export capacity by 2030, from the current 35 million tons per year to 100 million tons per year. The critical project in this direction is “Arctic LNG-2”, aimed at increasing the transportation and sale of Russian gas on international markets.
In addition, the project can double the export capacity of Novatek, the largest private gas producer in Russia.
They however stated that, exports from Russia to the EU in 2022 accounted for slightly more than 3 per cent of the global LNG market, which excludes a shocking increase in prices when the embargo is introduced because the EU will be able to import gas from other sources, in particular from Qatar and the USA.
The statement further added that “Last week, the European Commission announced that the EU’s gas storages are 90% full, which is significantly ahead of the schedule of previous years and allows the continent to move away from the imports of Russian gas. Ukrainian civil society organisations believe an embargo on Russian LNG should be part of the 12th sanctions package and could dramatically reduce Russia’s economic ability to continue its war against Ukraine.”
“Since the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, EU countries have imported Russian LNG worth about 20 billion US dollars. This year Russian LNG was increasingly flowing to Spain, Belgium and France. This has to stop. Russia’s export revenues from fossil fuels and production volumes should steeply decrease: international sanctions should work to dismantle the Russian oil and gas industry, not keep it afloat. In the 12th package of sanctions, the EU should introduce an embargo on the supply of LNG from Russia and close all loopholes in the sanctions with the consistent goal of keeping Russian fossil fuels in the ground. Then the world will have a chance to achieve the internationally agreed goal of limiting global warming under the Paris Agreement”, – says Svitlana Romanko, founder and director of Razom We Stand, in her oped at European Pravda.
As early as July 2023, the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, called on EU member states to immediately start work on the 12th package of sanctions.