The Deputy Prime Minister of Bulgaria, Asen Vasilev, in his recent statement, cited that if permitted, the Balkan state will ask for an exemption from the European Union on the oil embargo proposed to impose on Russia amid its Ukraine invasion.
As per the sources, the EU members during Wednesday’s meeting haven’t reached an agreement on the matter of imposing an embargo on Russia but are likely to wind up the matter on Thursday (today, May 5, 2022).
Deputy Prime Minister added, “Bulgaria, technologically, can do without Russian crude oil, but that would push up fuel prices – significantly. So, if the European Commission (EU) considers exemptions, we would want to take advantage of such exemptions as it will be in the best interest of the Bulgarian consumers, the Bulgarian hauliers and the Bulgarian people as a whole”.
Following the above statement, he then added, “A firm European position ‘we are halting everything for everyone’ is one thing. But if there are exemptions, we will exercise our right to use the same exception”.
The proposal of the Commission includes discontinuing the Russian crude oil supply by the end of the ongoing year.
Meanwhile, the President of the European Union, Ursula von der Leyen, speaking on the matter, stated yesterday, “Finally, we now propose a ban on Russian oil. Let’s be clear: it would not be easy. But we simply have to work on it. We would make sure that we phase out Russian oil in an orderly fashion. To maximize pressure on Russia while minimizing the impact on our economies”.
The European country is dependent on Russia for its 90% oil gas supply. Russia recently has banned supplying gas to Bulgaria, as the country refuses to pay the amount in roubles. Besides this, Russia announced that it would also be not supplying gas to Poland.