EU planning to phase out Russian oil and sanction more banks in six months


The European Union’s chief executive on Wednesday has announced a phased oil embargo, according to media reports, in its latest efforts to isolate Russia for its Ukraine invasion.  

Sanctions will also be announced on more Russian banks.   

In an address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced the measures. These efforts, however, must also be agreed by EU governments.   

“We will make sure that we phase out Russian oil in an orderly fashion, in a way that allows us and our partners to secure alternative supply routes and minimizes the impact on global markets,” von der Leyen said.   

The EU’s leader has also called on the bloc to support the move to ban oil imports.  

The proposed measures include phasing out supplies of Russian crude oil within six months, while also looking to end the import of refined products by the end of the year.   

The sixth round of sanctions will also affect Russia’s top lender Sberbank, diplomats told Reuters.  It will also get excluded from the SWIFT messaging system.  

Since the bloc heavily relies on Russian oil, the ban has not yet been properly discussed at the EU level.

Meanwhile, the European Union has also proposed sanctions on the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, news agency AFP reported, citing an official document.