March 31 President of Russia Vladimir Putin signed a decree stipulating that all gas supply contracts with companies registered in “unfriendly” countries will be paid in rubles. The measure only applies to Gazprom’s pipe exports, and the company is expected to receive its first ruble payments in the second half of April and May.
In a FAQ document reviewed by Sputnik on Friday, the European Commission answered in the affirmative to the question whether “it is still possible to pay for gas after the adoption of Decree No. 172 of 31 March without contravening EU law”. .
“Yes, this seems possible. EU companies can ask their Russian counterparts to fulfill their contractual obligations in the same way as before the regulation was adopted, ie by depositing the amount due in euros or dollars. The regulation of 31 March does not prevent a payment process in line with EU restrictive measures.” the Commission stated in its guidelines.
At the same time, the document acknowledges that “the procedure for derogating from the requirements of the Regulation is not yet clear”, but states that European importers will not be barred from opening accounts with Gazprombank. The guidelines also stated that EU companies could clarify that they intended to meet their obligations under existing agreements and consider payments in euros and dollars.
Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine on 24 February following a request for assistance from the breakaway republics of Donetsk and Luhansk to defend itself against provocations in Ukraine. In response, the EU launched a comprehensive sanctions campaign against Moscow, including airspace closures and restrictive measures against a number of Russian authorities and communities, the media and financial institutions.
Source: ANI / Sputnik
Source: The Nordic Page