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EU to Phase Out Russian Gas, Oil, Coal Imports – Leaders’ Draft

Europe will also accelerate the development of renewables and the production of their key components. Further, EU countries will connect European gas and electricity networks to share the resources better, fully synchronise power grids and reinforce contingency planning for security of supply.
Full moon rises over the Gazprom Neft's oil refinery in Omsk, Russia February 10, 2020. REUTERS/Alexey Malgavko
Full moon rises over the Gazprom Neft’s oil refinery in Omsk, Russia February 10, 2020. REUTERS/Alexey Malgavko

European Union leaders will agree at a summit this week to phase out the EU's dependency on imports of Russian gas, oil and coal, a draft statement showed, marking a turning point in its policy towards Moscow prompted by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

EU leaders will meet in Versailles on Thursday and Friday to discuss boosting their joint defence capability and Ukraine's bid to become a member of the 27-nation bloc. L8N2V445U

Burned by the experience of supply shortages in microchips and pharmaceuticals during the COVID-19 pandemic, the leaders will also discuss how to make the EU more strategically independent of global suppliers in these sectors and food.

"We agreed to phase out our dependency on Russian gas, oil and coal imports," the draft statement of the leaders, seen by Reuters, said.

The task will be tough, however, because the EU buys from Russia 45% of its imported gas, around a third of its oil and nearly half of its coal. This makes the bloc vulnerable should Russia decide to retaliate for EU policies by curbing exports.

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