Paying for Russian gas in roubles is ‘unacceptable’, says G7 | Russia-Ukraine war News

German Economic system Minister Robert Habeck says the Group of Seven has referred to as ‘on the businesses involved to not adjust to Putin’s demand’.

Paying for Russian gasoline in roubles can be unacceptable, Group of Seven (G7) international locations have reiterated, with German Economic system Minister Robert Habeck saying this current demand confirmed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s again was “towards the wall”.

“All G7 [energy] ministers agreed that it is a unilateral and clear breach of the prevailing agreements,” mentioned Habeck, whose nation holds the presidency of the G7 most industrialised nations.

“Cost in roubles isn’t acceptable and … we name on the businesses involved to not adjust to Putin’s demand,” he mentioned on Monday.

Putin introduced final week that Russia would solely settle for funds in roubles for pure gasoline deliveries to “unfriendly international locations”, which incorporates all European Union members.

Economists mentioned the transfer appeared designed to attempt to help the rouble, which has collapsed towards different currencies since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24 and Western international locations responded with far-reaching sanctions towards Moscow. However some analysts expressed doubt that it could work.

Requested by reporters earlier on Monday if Russia might reduce pure gasoline provides to European clients in the event that they reject the demand to pay in roubles, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov mentioned in a convention name that “we clearly aren’t going to produce gasoline totally free.”

“In our state of affairs, it’s hardly attainable and possible to have interaction in charity for Europe,” Peskov mentioned.

Putin’s ‘again towards the wall’

The transfer comes as Moscow struggles to prop up its economic system within the face of debilitating sanctions imposed by the West over his invasion of Ukraine.

“I feel we should interpret this demand as Putin having his again towards the wall,” Habeck instructed reporters following a digital assembly together with his G7 counterparts.

The G7 bloc consists of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the US.

French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday rejected Putin’s gas-for-roubles demand.

The Russian transfer “isn’t consistent with what was signed, and I don’t see why we might apply it,” Macron mentioned.

Like different European international locations, Germany is racing to scale back its heavy reliance on Russian vitality imports within the wake of the Ukraine conflict.

Germany has to wean itself off Russian oil, gasoline and coal “so as to not strengthen the regime”, Habeck mentioned, and since Moscow has revealed itself to be “an unreliable provider”.

Berlin was fast to tug the plug on the large Nord Stream 2 gasoline pipeline with Russia in protest over Putin’s aggression.

However the German authorities has to date resisted calls to impose an embargo on Russian vitality imports, saying that to take action might plunge Europe’s greatest economic system into chaos.

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