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Russia denounces oil price cap agreed by EU, G7

Russia on Saturday denounced a $60 price cap on its oil agreed by the EU, G7 and Australia, even as Ukraine suggested it was not tough enough and might have to be revisited.

“We will not accept this price cap,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told domestic news agencies, adding that Russia, the world’s second-largest crude exporter, was “analysing” the move.

The $60 oil price cap will come into effect on Monday or soon after, alongside an EU embargo on maritime deliveries of Russian crude oil.

The embargo will prevent seaborne shipments of Russian crude to the European Union, which account for two thirds of the bloc’s oil imports from Russia, potentially depriving Russia’s war chest of billions of euros.

But while Kyiv welcomed the price cap earlier Saturday, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his evening address that the level set was not “serious” as it would not do enough damage to the Russian economy.

“Russia has already caused huge losses to all countries of the world by deliberately destabilizing the energy market,” he argued in his nightly address, describing the decision on the price cap as “a weak position”.

It is “only a matter of time when stronger tools will have to be used”, Zelensky added.

The G7 nations — Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States — along with Australia have already said they are prepared to adjust the price ceiling if necessary.

The cap stops countries paying more than $60 a barrel for Russian oil deliveries by tanker vessel and is designed to make it harder for Russia to bypass EU sanctions by selling beyond the European Union at market prices.