US Congress to 'explore' Russian oil ban: Pelosi
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reveals that Congress is exploring the possibility of banning Russian oil and intends to spend $10 billion this week in aid to Ukraine.
US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi revealed on Sunday that the chamber is "exploring" legislation to ban the import of Russian oil, adding that Congress intends to enact this week $10 billion in aid for Ukraine in response to Russia's military operation in Ukraine.
"The House is currently exploring strong legislation that will further isolate Russia from the global economy," Pelosi said in a letter.
"Our bill would ban the import of Russian oil and energy products into the United States, repeal normal trade relations with Russia and Belarus, and take the first step to deny Russia access to the World Trade Organization."
Earlier, however, the special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs, Amos Hochstein, told Bloomberg that the US will not impose sanctions on Russian crude exports to avoid a surge in global oil costs.
"The sanctions will not target the oil flows as we go forward," Hochstein said.
Furthermore, he added: "If we target the oil and gas sector for [President Vladimir] Putin, and in this case the Russian energy establishment, the prices would spike," which means that the US and its allies would "suffer the consequences."
How did the sanctions affect oil?
Sanctions that were implemented by the EU, US, Canada, Australia, and other western allies on Russia come with the aim to suppress the Russian economy - how has that been going so far?
The Russian operation in Ukraine triggered soaring oil prices and pushed investors to shift money into ultra-safe US government bonds. The oil prices surged above $110 a barrel on Wednesday after Russia faced economic damage and isolation.
Brent crude oil prices have taken a hike to $120 a barrel on Thursday as Russian exports are disrupted by the wave of sanctions implemented on Russia, with fears arising of Washington slapping sanctions on Russian oil.
The Russian operation in Ukraine triggered soaring oil prices: the oil prices surged above $110 a barrel after Russia faced economic damage and isolation.
Earlier, it was noted that the price for May 2022 futures contracts for Brent crude oil increased 5.83% on the ICE Exchange, increasing to $111.09 a barrel. The last time Brent crude prices exceeded $111 per barrel was in July 2014.
In the past 30 days, Brent crude prices have seen a 37% increase, as the six-month contract's spread hit an all-time-high record which indicates a shortage of supplies.