The European Commission (EC) has eased the requirements on imposing an oil embargo against Russia that has been postponed for half a year after two days of abortive negotiations between envoys of 27 members of the European Union on the sixth package of sanctions, a diplomatic source told TASS on Friday.
“The European Commission has offered a revised draft of restrictions against Russian oil. It contains a number of waivers and postponements that are to satisfy EU states,” the diplomat said, adding that the discussion in the committee of permanent members of the EU “on compromise proposals will take place on Friday.”
On May 4, EC President Ursula von der Leyen announced the sixth package of sanctions against Moscow, which includes the postponed embargo on Russian oil supplies. The European Commission suggested that crude oil deliveries from Russia to the EU be banned within six months, while imports of petroleum products – in 2023, she said. The European Commission also agreed to enable Hungary and Slovakia to continue buying Russian crude oil until the end of 2024.
EU envoys discussed the European Commission’s proposals on May 4 and 5, but failed to reach a consensus. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Thursday that neither Hungary nor the European Union overall were ready to accept the embargo on Russian oil imports, warning that the EC’s persistency was fraught with undermining the European unity. As a result, the European Commission was forced to ease its requirements on bans on Russian oil.