The G7 countries, which on Sunday accused Vladimir Putin of shaming Russia with his actions in Ukraine, have pledged to wean themselves off Russian oil, but without giving a specific timetable. “The entire G7 today pledged to ban or phase out imports of Russian oil,” the White House said in a statement on Sunday.
This decision “will deal a blow to the main artery irrigating the economy of (Vladimir) Putin and deprive him of the income he needs to finance his war” against Ukraine, says the American executive. This weaning will be done “in an appropriate and reasoned manner”, write the Heads of State and Government of the G7 countries in their final communiqué, which does not however specify what commitments exactly each of them has made, namely the Germany (which holds the presidency this year), Canada, the United States, France, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
European Union member states more dependent on Russian oil and gas
The G7 held its third meeting of the year by videoconference on Sunday, with the participation of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. It lasted a little over an hour, according to the Americans. As Vladimir Putin prepares to celebrate the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany with great fanfare on Monday, the Heads of State and Government reaffirmed to the President of Ukraine their “commitment to taking further steps to help the Ukraine to secure a free and democratic future” and to “defend itself and repel future acts of aggression”.
The West has so far shown very close coordination in their announcements of sanctions against Russia, but they are not moving at the same pace when it comes to Russian oil and gas. The United States, which were not big consumers, have already banned the import of Russian hydrocarbons. The member states of the European Union, under pressure to join the movement, but much more dependent on Russia, continued Sunday to carry out difficult negotiations to set up an embargo on Russian oil. The project is being held up by several Member States, notably Hungary.
New US sanctions
Washington, for its part, announced in a statement from the White House on Sunday a new round of sanctions against Russia, around two major axes: the media, and the access of Russian companies and large fortunes to consulting and accounting services. of which the Americans and the British are the world’s leading specialists.
Another line of attack from Washington: prohibit the provision of “auditing, management, consulting, marketing services, all services used to operate multinational companies, but also potentially to circumvent sanctions or hide evil wealth acquired,” said the same source. In its press release, the G7 as a whole also said it was determined to “prohibit or prevent the supply of key services” to Russia in order to strengthen its “insulation”.
The West also promises to “continue to act against Russian banks connected to the global economy”, to “continue to fight the Russian regime’s attempts to spread its propaganda” and to harden its “campaign against the (Russian) elites and their families”.