EU preparing new anti-Russian sanctions for coming days
The EU is preparing a package of sanctions against Russia, but it will not be discussed in Monday's meeting.
The European Union is preparing a new package of sanctions against Russia, but the matter will not yet be discussed on the agenda of the EU energy ministers' meeting on Monday.
"A new package of sanctions against Russia is being prepared, but this will not be the topic of today's council of energy ministers. This issue will be reviewed in the coming days," French Minister for the Ecological Transition Barbara Pompili told reporters ahead of the meeting in Brussels.
Monday's meeting will focus exclusively on gas issues, Pompili said, adding that the European Union wants to show that they are all "unanimous in continuing to pay for contracts [for Russian gas] in euros and will not allow unilateral modifications in the contracts to be imposed on us."
Pompili said she convened the EU Energy Council on Monday to express solidarity with Bulgaria and Poland and condemn Russia's decision to cut off gas supplies to these countries.
"We will continue to pay in euros for those contracts that were signed in euros, and in dollars for the contracts that were initially signed in dollars," Pompili added.
Russian energy giant Gazprom announced last Wednesday that it had completely suspended gas supplies to Bulgaria's largest natural gas distribution company Bulgargaz and Polish oil and gas company PGNiG, as the companies failed to pay for gas in rubles.
A senior official in Prime Minister Viktor Orban's government said Monday that Hungary would be ready to veto EU sanctions on the Russian oil industry if the measures restricted Budapest's ability to import energy.