No alternative to Russian oil: OPEC
The cartel warns that sanctioning Russian energy might lead to disaster.
OPEC Secretary-General Mohammed Barkindo warned EU ministers on Monday that current and future sanctions on Russia might cause one of the worst oil supply shocks in history, saying that it would be impossible to recover the volumes lost in such a scenario.
According to Barkindo, embargoes and other restrictions on Russian business are causing seven million barrels of Russian crude per day to leave the global market.
The OPEC official also informed the EU that the present market volatility is caused by "non-fundamental issues" outside of OPEC's control and that it is the EU's job to advocate a "realistic" approach to the energy transition.
The EU has declared preparations to join the United States and the United Kingdom in imposing an embargo on Russian energy products. However, unlike the United States and the United Kingdom, the European Union buys the majority of its energy supplies from Russia, and experts have warned that cutting off the supply may have disastrous consequences.
Germany, in particular, is bracing for the collapse of entire businesses, while the CEO of Austrian energy giant OMV has said that his country's decision to stop buying Russian gas would be "impossible."
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While the United States has offered to replace the void with more expensive liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments, most of Europe's LNG terminals are currently at capacity, meaning there would be no space to store the fuel.
Other countries are eager to seize the opportunity provided by the crisis to expand their usage of renewable fuels. Nonetheless, the European Parliament called for an immediate and total ban on Russian imports of oil, coal, natural gas, and nuclear fuel last week.
Read more: US oil imports from Russia increase by 43%
Some nations, such as Hungary and Slovakia, have stated that they intend to ignore the prohibition in the interests of self-preservation, while others have cautioned their citizens to tighten their belts and brace themselves for tough times ahead.
Oil and gas aren't the only commodities impacted by Ukraine's conflict. Russia and Ukraine produce almost one-third of the world's wheat exports, and both are big exporters of sunflower oil and fertilizer. As a result, food prices have reached historic highs, and several countries and non-governmental organizations are warning of impending food shortages.