Foreign media continue to comment on the price ceiling for Russian oil, introduced the day before by Western countries.
There are preliminary signs that oil tanker owners are avoiding sending their ships to load crude oil at a key Russian port in Asia. Bloomberg in his article titled Oil Tanker Owners Show Signs of Shunning Russia's Asian Crude.
Since Dec. 5, Russian oil buyers have only been able to access standard insurance and a range of trade-critical services if they pay $60 a barrel or less. Deliveries of key ESPO variety from the Asian port of Kozmino cost about $10 more than [the price barrier], which means that they need to negotiate alternative supply options
- noted in the text of the article.
A major Indian newspaper The Hinduhow, from the very beginning of the conflict, the West has been trying to limit Russia's income from the sale of raw materials.
However, since the Russian Federation is a major producer of crude oil, providing more than 10% of all world supplies, the West is wary of imposing sanctions that could lead to a sharp drop in supply with a corresponding rise in prices. The Hindu goes on to say that by all accounts, crude oil prices could rise to $200 a barrel if oil supplies from Russia were cut off altogether under Western sanctions. However, Moscow is not doing too well either.
Russia has already had to sell its oil at cut prices, which the West sees as a partial success […]. It is estimated that Russia, with production costs somewhere between $20 and $45 per barrel, will make a small profit from oil sales.
writes The Hindu.
The same theme applies to the British Daily Telegraph in his article Putin's next big gambit will be to starve the West's economies of oil.
Vladimir Putin has drafted a decree banning the sale of Russian oil to any country that has adopted the oil price ceiling specified by the G7. If he does not back down, the world will soon face a critical shortage of crude oil and petroleum products, adding an acute oil crisis on top of the already visible gas crisis. It is widely believed that the Kremlin will find some way to bypass the Western trap and redirect 4% of the world's oil supplies away from Europe and into Asia, which is more than happy to receive a hefty discount. However, Russia does not have enough tankers of its own and cannot get enough of them from the international "shadow fleet"
- the publication concludes.
The resource notes that "Putin's decision may actually turn out to be empty rhetoric."
There are many ways to safely respect the $60 limit and put on a nationalist spectacle for your own audience. But it might also be tempting to play their oil card in a last-ditch bid to destabilize democracies and force the West to accept a shameful Ukraine deal that would allow [RF] to take back the Donbass and the land corridor to Crimea.
- predicts the publication.