Putin has even benefited from the sanctions plans so far. The price of oil has risen, and with it Russia’s revenues. The Russian President spoke of this for the first time on Tuesday on television. Oil prices began to rise as soon as von der Leyen announced the sanctions plans. With her announcement, the President of the Commission has achieved the exact opposite of her purpose.
Guntram Wolff, head of the Brussels think tank Bruegel, has already predicted this in the “Welt”: “Announcing today that there will be an embargo in six or eight months creates a paradoxical situation,” explained Wolff. It signals everyone to “buy as much oil as possible now and be prepared to pay a high price for it.” The “success”: “For the next six months, the cash register will ring in Russia. Russia will generate a lot of revenue from this.”
Now Chancellor Karl Nehammer (ÖVP) has criticized the EU Commission because of the dispute over the oil embargo. “In principle, I think it is appropriate to only announce results for the Commission once negotiations have been fully concluded. You can also do the opposite, then you can see the result as now in the discussion,” explained Nehammer on Tuesday at a meeting with his Czech counterpart Petr Fiala in Prague.
“The sharper, the more in-depth, the more far-reaching sanctions are considered, the more important it is to discuss them sufficiently with the individual member states beforehand, so that the impression of dissent does not arise on the outside,” said Nehammer. He also showed understanding for the Hungarian resistance: “It must be clear that the countries that are more dependent on Russian oil also have a perspective of how they will continue to be supplied with the raw material.” Nehammers Czech counterpart agrees, regretting “that it appears to the outside world that we are not united” on the issue of EU sanctions.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, has described European energy policy as “economic suicide”: “Surrendering Russian energy resources means that Europe will systematically, for a long-term perspective, become the region with the highest energy costs in the world,” he said on Tuesday a session on the development of the oil economy.
According to Putin, the high energy prices also reduced the competitiveness of industry in the EU. According to Putin, Europe is already losing compared to the competitiveness of other regions. This process will accelerate. He said that Europe ignores the damage to its own economy. It is clear that individual countries are so dependent on Russian oil, for example, that they cannot do without it permanently.
Russia itself wants to increasingly switch to Asia. Around two-thirds of Russian oil exports currently go to Europe. “Even if they break away completely, the Russian budget will still do well,” says Rolf Langhammer, foreign trade expert at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW) in the “Welt”. “The high world market price of currently 100 euros and other customers such as China are partially compensating for the losses and it is not foreseeable that the oil price will fall.”