June 24, 2024

EU reveals 14th sanctions package on Russia, with LNG included for the first time

The European Union has adopted its 14th sanctions package on Russia for its ongoing invasion of Ukraine, with LNG, the sector’s growth and some shipment circumvention loopholes included for the first time.

The new measures are aimed at further reducing Russia’s revenues from LNG sales and transport by prohibiting the use of EU ports for the transshipment of Russian LNG. The package also bans all future investments in and exports to LNG projects under construction in Russia. Moreover, the package prohibits the import of Russian LNG into specific terminals which are not connected to the EU gas pipeline network.

For the first time, the EU also adopted a measure targeting specific vessels contributing to Russia's warfare against Ukraine. These vessels are subject to a port access ban and a ban on the provision of services, including the transport of LNG components or transshipments of LNG. The EU ministers’ statement said that 27 vessels were included in the list, which can be updated as regularly as needed to address the involvement of those vessels aiding Russia in waging its war against Ukraine.

The sanctions have a nine-month transition period.

The Belgian Presidency at the Council of the EU announced that the sanctions were agreed on Friday, with Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson highlighting the significance of the new sanctions in a separate post, stating that they “for the first time …include(s) targeted measures on LNG, a move that is crucial in reducing Russia's energy revenues.”

The sanctions follow approval of a gas package in April that allows member states to limit gas imports from Russia and Belarus. Simson said in early May that the move should pave the way for smooth approval of new restrictions on Russia's LNG exports. The EU already is committed to phasing out Russian fossil fuel imports by 2027.

According to Kpler data, the EU imported a total of 15.2 mt of Russian LNG, which accounted for 15% of total LNG imports in the period.

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