Photographers take pictures as (left-right) Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, US President Joe Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, France's President Emmanuel Macron and Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi wait to start a meeting of five G7 leaders on June 28, 2022 at Elmau Castle, southern Germany, on the last day of the G7 Summit.
(LUDOVIC MARIN / POOL / AFP)
GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany – G7 leaders have agreed to study placing price caps on imports of Russian oil and gas to try to limit Moscow's ability to fund its special military operation in Ukraine, G7 officials said on Tuesday.
The European Union will explore with international partners ways to curb energy prices, including the feasibility of introducing temporary import price caps, a section of the final G7 communique seen by Reuters said
The European Union will explore with international partners ways to curb energy prices, including the feasibility of introducing temporary import price caps, a section of the final G7 communique seen by Reuters said. The officials said this meant both oil and gas.
The Group of Seven rich nations have been debating a global price cap for Russian energy.
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Russian oil export revenues climbed in May even though sanctions reduced its export volumes, the International Energy Agency said in its June monthly report.
The United States was the first to call for a mechanism that would cap the price other countries pay for Russian oil.
The idea is to tie financial services, insurance and the shipping of oil cargoes to a cap on Russian oil prices. So if a shipper or importer wanted these services, they would have to commit to the Russian oil being sold for a set maximum price.
Italy, whose economy is reliant on Russian energy, pushed to extend the price cap to gas.
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Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi last week warned of the need to tackle energy prices to contain inflation and said the main objection to a gas cap from fellow Europeans was fear it could lead Russia to reduce supplies further.
Picture taken on May 9,2022 shows equipment operated by GCA (Gas Connect Austria) and TAG (Trans Austria Gas pipelines) at one of the largest interconnection gas hubs in Europe at Baumgarten an der March, Lower Austria. The facility mainly receives Russian imports, but takes also shipments of gas from Norway and some other countries. (JOE KLAMAR / AFP)
France has said the price cap mechanism should extend beyond Russian products to reduce prices more broadly, including for the G7 nations that are looking to source energy from elsewhere.
G7 leaders have also agreed to push for a ban on imports of Russian gold as part of efforts to tighten the sanctions squeeze on Moscow, an EU official said on Tuesday.
Britain, the United States, Japan and Canada agreed at the start of the G7 summit on Sunday that they would ban imports of newly mined or refined Russian gold, while the European Union expressed some reservations.
Tackling food insecurity
G7 nations, which generate nearly half the world's economic output, want to crank up pressure on Russia without stoking already soaring inflation that is causing strains at home and savaging developing nations.
There is a "real risk" of multiple famines this year as the Russia-Ukraine conflict has compounded the negative impact of climate crises and the COVID-19 pandemic on food security, United Nations chief Antonio Guterres said last week.
The G7 will commit up to $5 billion to improve global food security, the senior US official said, with the United States providing over half of that sum, which would go to efforts to fight hunger in 47 countries and fund regional organizations.
Asked if G7 leaders had found a way to let Ukraine export its grain, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Tuesday: "We're working on it, we're all working on it".