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Russia says it may cut gas supplies if oil ban goes ahead

Russia has said it may close its main gas pipeline to Germany if the West goes ahead with a ban on Russian oil.

Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said a “rejection of Russian oil would lead to catastrophic consequences for the global market”, causing prices to more than double to $300 a barrel.

The US has been exploring a potential ban with allies as a way of punishing Russia for the military operation in Ukraine.

But Germany and the Netherlands rejected the plan on Monday, the BBC reports.

The EU gets about 40% of its gas and 30% of its oil from Russia, and has no easy substitutes if supplies are disrupted.

In an address on Russian state television, Mr Novak said it would be “impossible to quickly find a replacement for Russian oil on the European market”.

“It will take years, and it will still be much more expensive for European consumers. Ultimately, they will be hurt the worst by this outcome,” he said.

Pointing to Germany’s decision last month to freeze certification of Nord Stream 2, a new gas pipeline connecting the two countries, he added that an oil embargo could prompt retaliation.

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