The EU and the United States seem to be turning up the heat on Russia with plans to ban energy giants like Exxon Mobil, BP and Shell from searching for crude oil in Russia’s Arctic, deep seas and shale formations, writes Bloomberg citing three American officials.
The ban would target crude reserves that could yield oil to the market in five years, but would not, however, apply to the ongoing drilling and production activities at conventional land-based wells and along the shallow edges of inland seas, Bloomberg reports.
The European Union plans to impose new economic sanctions on Russia over its actions in Ukraine, diplomats said on Thursday in Brussels.
The new batch of sanctions, to take effect Friday following their publication in EU’s official journal, are expected to target Russia’s oil and arms sectors, as well as cutting access to European capital markets for Russian firms and banks, asset freezes, export bans etc, the Associated Press writes.
The decision comes as the EU is still tiptoeing around final sanctions, having in mind its reliance on Russian gas supply.
The decision making process is more complex, having in mind that the recently established truce between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian rebels is still fragile.
Russia is said to be pulling back its troops from Ukraine, as talks in Brussels over the second batch of penalties ensue.
Scandinavian countries such as Finland could be hit hard by yet another round of trade sanctions taking into account strong economic exchange with Russia, which has now taken a downward turn.