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EU – India. Russian oil flows to India – Josep Borrell, EU foreign policy chief comments

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The European Union should deal with India, which sells Russian oil to Europe in the form of fuels, including diesel oil, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said in an interview with the Financial Times. Russia has become India’s main oil supplier, surpassing Iraq for the first time.

India last year they became the main recipient of Russian oil. The sharp increase in imports is the result of i.a. the purchase by Indian refineries of discounted Russian oil, which was rejected by the West in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. Reuters noted that access to cheap raw material boosted production and profits for Indian refiners, enabling them to export petroleum products to Europe on competitive terms and increase market share.

Russian oil in Europe

“If diesel or petrol enter Europe… they come from India and are made from Russian oil, then this is definitely a circumvention of sanctions and member states must take appropriate measures,” he said Josep Borrell in an interview with FT.

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“It’s normal for India to buy Russian oil, but if they’re using it to be a hub for refining Russian oil and selling us by-products, then we have to act,” he said.

India’s imports of Russian oil rose for the seventh consecutive month in March. Russia became the main supplier of raw material to this country in the financial year 2022-2023, for the first time overtaking Iraq.

According to Kpler, before Moscow invaded Ukraine, India exported an average of 154,000 to Europe. barrels per day of diesel and jet fuel. It has now grown to 200,000. barrels a day, after February 5 this year. The EU embargo on imports of Russian fuels came into force.

Borrell told the British daily that any mechanism to stem the flow of Russian oil would have to be put in place by national authorities, suggesting that the EU could target buyers of Indian fuels. – If they sell, it’s because someone is buying. And we need to look at who is buying – noted the head of EU diplomacy.

In 2022, the European Council adopted the sixth package of sanctions, in which it banned, among others, purchase, import and transfer of seaborne crude oil and certain petroleum products from Russia to the EU. The embargo took effect on December 5. EU sanctions do not apply to overland pipeline transport.

Financial Times, Reuters

Main photo source: EPA/CHRISTINE OLSSON



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