During its summit meeting in Brussels on Monday, the European Union agreed on a new set of sanctions whereby seaborne oil imports from Russia would be immediately banned. Two-thirds of the Russian oil imported by the EU comes via tanker and one-third by the Druzhba pipeline. The embargo on seaborne oil imports would therefore apply to two-thirds of all oil imported from Russia.
Milanović said in his ironical comment that Russian President Vladimir Putin could now have a self-complacent smile on his face, and gas and oil supplies could be redirected from Russia to other destinations “where there is a high demand for them”.
Milanović went on to say that European citizens will pay a high price for the sanctions that are not working.
“Perhaps one day, they will start producing some effect. Currently, neither has the rouble depreciated nor is Russia feeling the financial effects (of the sanctions). Once it starts feeling them, the war will be already over.”
Milanović, therefore, thinks that Europe should introduce “an all-out energy embargo” against Russia. He wonders why no embargo has been put on the gas imports from Russia.
As part of the agreement to ban the import of Russian oil delivered by ships, Hungary will be able to procure oil via Croatia in case of problems with the Druzhba pipeline.
Milanović finds this to be good for Hungary, while Croatia is “irrelevant” in this case and it can only earn a pittance in this arrangement.
“I would like to see Croatia playing a crucial role. However, Croatia is not a key player. Croatia is no player, at all,” said Milanović, calling for being engaged in a tug of war in trade.
He again claimed that Croatia “is not fighting for its interests”.
Even if it recognizes its interests, Croatia fails to advertise them. We are afraid of demanding anything. We are ashamed of the Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina, while we have understanding for the Turks,” said Milanović in reference to his view on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the problems surrounding the current electoral law in that country.
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