The European Commission (EC), as part of the upcoming sixth package of sanctions against the Russian Federation, considers it necessary to ban the import of all Russian oil to the EU, said on Wednesday the head of the EC, Ursula von der Leyen.
"Today we will propose a ban on all Russian oil in Europe. This will be a complete ban on the import of oil from the Russian Federation, delivered by sea and pipelines, crude and refined oil," she said, speaking at the European Parliament.
At the same time, she acknowledged that it would not be easy to take this step due to the serious dependence of a number of EU members on Russian oil, but the EU "must go for it."
According to her, the embargo on Russian oil should be introduced "neatly" in order to give the EU time to find alternative oil suppliers and minimize the impact of sanctions on oil markets. She noted that the refusal of oil and refined petroleum products from the Russian Federation should take six months and be completed by the end of 2022.
The New York Times reported, citing European diplomats familiar with the document on possible sanctions, that Hungary and Slovakia will allocate more time — until the end of 2023 — to the process of refusing to import Russian oil.
Hungary and Slovakia, two EU members with a huge dependence on Russian oil imports, will be given until December 2023 to impose a fuel ban.