Bloomberg learned about the EU plan to buy gas from Russia without violating sanctions

Importers will have to declare the fulfillment of all obligations to Russia after paying for gas in euros or dollars, the EC plan says, writes Bloomberg, further actions are unacceptable. Poland did not see clarity in the plan

The European Commission has prepared a plan for the purchase of Russian gas, which will allow importers to comply with Moscow's conditions without violating sanctions. In particular, European companies will have to indicate that they consider their obligations fulfilled after payment in dollars or euros in accordance with the contracts, Bloomberg writes, citing sources.

The EC informed the European governments about this at a closed meeting. Once the importers have made payment in euros or dollars and declared that they have fulfilled their obligations, Russia should not require them to take any further action regarding the payment.

Bloomberg interlocutors added that the European Commission decided not to prevent companies from opening an account with Gazprombank in US or European currency, but did not specify its attitude towards opening a ruble account.

Bloomberg sources indicated that European countries were divided in assessing the new recommendations of the European Commission. Germany, Hungary, France and Italy generally approved of the plan, but the Polish representatives felt that it did not bring legal clarity, calling for discussion of this topic by EU ambassadors. The rest of the countries, the agency’s interlocutors added, noted the absence of specific instructions on opening a ruble account.

German companies have already approved the European Commission’s plan, one Bloomberg source added.

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Moscow's requirements oblige buyers from the list of “unfriendly countries” open two accounts in Gazprombank— currency and ruble. After the payment is received on the first account in dollars or the Eurobank independently converts the funds on the Moscow Exchange, after which it credits rubles to the second account.

The European Commission called for not fulfilling the requirements of Russia, noting that this would be regarded as a violation of the laws imposed against countries of sanctions. Bloomberg notes that these warnings were made verbally without being fixed in documents.

Bulgaria and Poland at the end of April refused to comply with the conditions of Moscow, Gazprom; then suspended gas supplies to these countries. At the same time, a number of European companies noted that they would continue to buy gas from Russia even if they opened an account with Gazprombank. “We will pay the invoice amount, which will continue to be denominated in euros, to accounts with Gazprombank in accordance with the planned procedure,” explained in German VNG.

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