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UK Prime Minister Urges an Approach Away from Reliance on Russian Fuel

Photo: BBC

In a move that could reduce Russia’s hold on Europe, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged for a “step-by-step” approach to rely less heavily upon their oil and gas corollary in the Ukraine-Russia crisis. Johnson said countries must team up to figure out alternatives following his meeting with Canadian and Dutch prime ministers.

In a warning, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte stressed that immediately pressing a boycott would have “enormous consequences.”

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has issued a warning against Russian oil and gas barring. He says that Europe had “deliberately exempted” Russia’s energy supply due to the lack of alternatives at this time.

Moreover, Russia has announced a price surge in oil to $300 per barrel and warned that it might shut the main gas pipeline to Germany if America stopped importing resources due to its current situation with Ukraine.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said, “Foregoing Russian oil will have catastrophic consequences for the world market.” 

When asked about speculations that the West was in active talks with European countries about boycotting Russian oil imports, Johnson remarked Western allies are “moving very, very fast,” and discussions which would have been ruled out weeks ago are “now very much on the table.” 

Johnson said he would soon lay out a new energy supply tactic, stating that the UK is seeking to utilize its own fossil fuels further. However, he further stated that the UK would not abandon its adherence to reducing carbon emissions. 

Russia supplies under 5% of UK gas; however, the number would be around 40% for EU nations. 

In the news conference, Rutte said the shift would have to be “diligent and not overnight,” along with a quicker penetration of renewable energy. An on-the-spot shift would “basically undermine supply chains over the world, particularly in Europe,” he continued, adding: “It would also have an impact on Ukraine itself.”

Johnson announced an additional £175 million of funds from the UK to Ukraine, and Trudeau stated that Canada would place sanctions on ten additional Russian oligarchs and officials.

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