According to the information compiled from the data of the international non-governmental organization Global Witness and the Energy and Clean Air Research Center (CREA), EU countries that want to get rid of energy dependency on Russia with the war in Ukraine are the biggest buyers of Russian LNG.
EU countries have recently been importing more LNG from Russia than before the war.
While the share of EU countries in Russia’s LNG exports was 39 percent in the January-July period of 2021, this rate increased to 49 percent in 2022 and 52 percent in 2023. Thus, EU countries bought more than half of Russian LNG despite the war.
EU countries imported a record amount of LNG from Russia in the January-July period, with a total of 13.2 billion cubic meters.
The EU’s LNG imports were at the level of 9 billion cubic meters in the same period of 2021, before the war. Thus, Russian LNG imports by EU countries in 7 months of this year increased by 46.6 percent above the pre-war level.
In addition, EU countries paid approximately 5.3 billion euros to Russia for LNG imports in 7 months.
Among EU countries, Spain and Belgium ranked first in the purchase of Russian LNG. During this period, 18 percent of Russia’s total LNG sales were made to Spain and 17 percent to Belgium.
Russia ranks fourth in global LNG exports after Australia, the United States and Qatar.
EU countries made 44 percent of their total LNG imports from the USA, 17 percent from Russia and 13 percent from Qatar.
The EU’s total LNG import capacity is approximately 157 billion cubic meters per year. Although this capacity is sufficient to meet approximately 40 percent of the total gas demand of EU countries, bottlenecks and infrastructure limitations in various parts of Europe prevent LNG from being transferred to all countries.
Before the Russia-Ukraine war, the EU imported 40 percent of the natural gas it used from Russia. With the war, Russia’s share in natural gas shipments to the EU fell to 8 percent.
On the other hand, the EU prepared a new energy strategy last year. In this context, the EU planned to completely get rid of its dependence on Russia in fossil fuels by 2027. However, the increase in the EU’s LNG imports from Russia revealed the inconsistency and inconsistency with the set target.
Russia’s fossil fuel revenues are over 400 billion euros
Since the beginning of the war on February 24, 2022, Russia has earned a total of 413 billion euros from fossil fuel exports.
Of this revenue, 277 billion euros came from oil sales, 101 billion euros from natural gas and 35 billion euros from coal sales.
Since the beginning of the war, EU countries have purchased fossil fuels from Russia for approximately 162 billion euros. Of this, 3.4 billion euros was paid for coal, 64 billion euros for natural gas and 94.6 billion euros for oil. This shows that EU countries continue to buy fossil fuels from Russia despite the war.
Despite the decision to embargo Russian coal, crude oil and petroleum products, the EU refrains from imposing any sanctions on the Russian natural gas it needs.
On the other hand, natural gas shipments from Russia to European countries through pipelines declined drastically. Before the war, Russia sold 150 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year to Europe, but this figure fell to around 60 billion cubic meters last year. The EU is trying to compensate for this natural gas deficit by purchasing LNG in large quantities and expensively from international markets.