EU approves sixth package of sanctions against Russia

European consumers will be the first to suffer from this decision. Not only will oil prices rise, but also those of petroleum products.”

Alexander Novak, Russian deputy prime minister in charge of energy.

The European Union (EU) managed to knock down the last hurdle to pass its sixth package of sanctions on Russia, by removing the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, from the sanctioned list, as requested by Hungary.

The final documents with the details of the sixth package of sanctions must still receive the written agreement of the countries of the block so that they can be published in the official gazette of the EU today.

“We have succeeded in getting Patriarch Kirill off the list. It was a matter of principle for us because of our defense of religious tolerance,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó said on Facebook.

This sixth package of EU sanctions against Russia is the most ambitious so far and also the one that caused the most problems for negotiators and diplomats to find a consensus.

The original proposal included a total embargo on European purchases of Russian oil, the expansion of the list of sanctioned persons and entities, the veto of the circulation of three Russian TV networks in the EU space and the removal of banks from the network. Swift.

After acrimonious negotiations that dragged on for a month, a summit of European leaders reached a political agreement on Monday to adopt an embargo on Russian oil reaching the EU by sea.

That plan excludes, for the moment, oil that arrives through pipelines, in an understanding carefully put together to protect Hungary, which vetoed the entire agreement for fear of the effects on its energy security.

To convince Budapest, other EU countries have agreed to exempt crude supplied through the Druzhba pipeline to Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

In addition to banning seaborne imports to Europe, the new sanctions include an immediate ban on insuring ships carrying Russian oil elsewhere.

Economic turmoil after sanctions

McDonald’s closed; spare parts for foreign cars are sold at gold prices; paper is scarce, these are some of the examples of the turmoil that is beginning to shake the Russian economy, despite the impression that it is resisting sanctions.

According to the independent portal The Bell, in April the income obtained through internal VAT was reduced by half and that of imported goods by a third, compared to the same month in 2021.

This means that “the income of most companies in Russia suffered,” says Andrei Gratshev, a tax expert at the consulting firm Birch Legal.

“Problems are emerging in many sectors, both in large and small companies,” warned the president of the Russian central bank, Elvira Nabiulina, at the end of April, giving as an example the shortage of buttons imported from European countries. (AFP)

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