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Hungary and Slovakia could be exempted from the embargo on oil imports from Russia

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The European Commission is expected to finalize preparations for the sixth package of sanctions against Russia due to the invasion of Ukraine on Tuesday, writes Reuters.

The new sanctions package would include a ban on Russian oil purchases, saying oil exports are a major source of foreign exchange earnings for Moscow.

Hungary, a country heavily dependent on Russian oil, has repeatedly said it will not agree to sanctions on energy. In turn, Slovakia is one of the EU countries most dependent on fossil fuels in Russia.

In order to maintain unity within the EU bloc, the European Commission could offer Slovakia and Hungary an exemption or a long transition period, “said one of the officials consulted by Reuters. In any case, the oil embargo will be introduced in several phases. , most likely to become fully operational by the beginning of next year, European officials added.

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The new package of sanctions is set to be presented to Member States’ ambassadors in Brussels on Wednesday.

At the same time, energy ministers from EU member states are meeting in crisis on Monday as the EU bloc seeks to come up with a joint response to Moscow’s call for European buyers to pay in rubles for Russian natural gas. otherwise they risk being interrupted.

The ruble payment could help Russia’s economy cope with the impact of international sanctions, as revenues from oil exports help Moscow finance what it calls a “special military operation.” According to a study by the Center for Research on Energy and Clean Air, EU countries paid more than 45 billion euros for Russian oil and gas alone after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24th.

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