Japan mulls options after US ban on Russian oil

Japan is weighing its options on Russian oil after the United States on Tuesday banned US energy imports from Russia, including oil, coal and LNG.

Japan has been coordinating closely with Western allies regarding sanctions against Russia following Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, but has yet to decide whether it will ban imports of Russian oil.

“We would like to work with (other) Group of Seven countries and the international community to manage the issue, while considering stable energy supply and security as Japan’s best interests,” Japanese Prime Minister Fumio said on Wednesday. Kishida. as worn by Jiji Press.

“While cooperating with the international community, including our G-7 partners, we will consider and take effective measures as appropriate,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said at a press conference.

In 2021, Russia accounted for around 4% of Japan’s crude oil imports and 9% of its LNG imports.

On Tuesday, US President Joe Biden announced a ban on Russian energy imports without the participation of European allies.

“We recognize that not all of our allies and partners are currently able to join us,” the White House said. notedannouncing the ban.

The United Kingdom, for its part, noted Tuesday that he would “phase out Russian oil imports in response to Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine by the end of the year.”

Russian imports account for 8% of total UK oil demand, with the highest share of diesel, the UK government has said.

Masakazu Tokura, chairman of Japan’s largest business lobby, the Japan Business Federation, noted earlier this week, it would be difficult to immediately replace Russian crude oil.

On Tuesday, Japan tightened sanctions against officials in Russia and Belarus, and banned exports of oil refinery equipment in Russia.

By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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