Brussels is prepared to impose sanctions against EU countries that enable their energy corporations to pay for Russian gas in roubles.
The decision came a day after Russia’s state-controlled energy conglomerate Gazprom said that gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria would be shut off.
Polish and Bulgarian administrations refused to follow Russian President Vladimir Putin’s rule, which requires “unfriendly” foreign purchasers, such as the EU’s 27 member states, to open a second bank account to convert euros into roubles and then pay for Russian fossil fuels.
“It’s a relatively complex setting,” European Commission’s Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis told European news agency Euronews, and added that “It’s member states which are monitoring the implementation of sanctions by concrete companies in their territory. But on the other hand, as European Commission, we are monitoring whether member states are actually enforcing sanctions.”
According to new research from the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air, the EU continues to be Russia’s top energy client, with the 27 member states having spent over €44 billion on Russian fossil fuels since the beginning of Russia’s war against Ukraine.
“It’s clear that we cannot give in to this Russia’s blackmail,” said Dombrovskis.
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