Oil is down over 3.2% on Thursday, while a pending G7 deal to cap Russian oil prices being discussed Friday could reverse that trend with Moscow now stating that it will retaliate by refusing to sell oil.
Russia has finally come out and openly declared that price caps on its oil would be costly to energy markets.
In a Thursday statement carried on Kommersant.ru, Russia said it would not supply oil to countries that decide to impose a price cap on its oil.
Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak has termed the idea of the G7 countries to limit the price of Russian oil a "complete absurdity" that will destabilize the entire industry.
According to the minister, Russia will not supply any oil and oil products to those countries that support the establishment of such a limit.
“We simply for such companies or countries that will impose restrictions, will not supply them with oil and oil products, since we will not work in non-market conditions,” the Deputy Prime Minister has said.
Novak has further said that Russian companies were adequately prepared for an oil embargo by the European Union and will manage to maintain oil production at the same level. According to Novak, Russia’s [production by year-end could reach 520-525 million tons comparable to last year’s production of 524 million tons.
The cap scheme, which was first brought to the table in June by the U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, could be set at half of the Russian purchasing price although the shape of the final deal and price level have yet to be announced. The initial idea was to maintain a cap above Russia’s cost of production to keep Russian oil on the market but reduce revenues for its war coffers.
On Wednesday, Yellen said she was "optimistic" that the G7 would come to a price-capping agreement. She also met with UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Nadhim Zahawi, who has offered British support for the plan, but noted that to be more effective, the plan would require more countries to come on board.
While Russian crude is selling at a $20/barrel discount now, it has not worked to stymie Moscow’s oil revenues thanks to Russia finding new markets in India and China.
New reports have emerged that during the second quarter, India slashed its crude imports from the United States by one million metric tonnes while sharply ramping up imports of discounted Russian oil. India’s energy mix now looks dramatically different from a year ago. Last year, Russian oil in India’s crude basket amounted to a paltry 2.2%, while the U.S. was 9.2%; right now, Russia accounts for nearly 12.9% of India’s crude imports, while the U.S. share has tumbled to just 5.4%
By Alex Kimani for Oilprice.com
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