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March 9, 2022

US bans imports of Russian oil and crude prices soar higher

Brent crude prices surged by 1.7% to reach $130.15 per barrel over concerns of tighter supply.

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The US Government has imposed a ban on crude oil imports from Russia in light of its recent invasion of Ukraine.

After close consultation with allies and partners around the world, US President Joe Biden ordered an import ban on Russian crude oil and certain petroleum products, LNG, and coal into the US.

According to the executive order, which targets Russia’s ‘main artery of economy’, Russian oil will not be accepted in the US.

The US has also decided to make no new investments in Russia’s energy sector.

The White House said: “Americans will also be prohibited from financing or enabling foreign companies that are making investments to produce energy in Russia.”

In 2021, the US imported approximately 700,000 barrels per day of crude oil, and refined petroleum products, from Russia.

In a similar move, the UK Government has said that it will phase out imports of Russian oil by the end of 2022.

UK Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said that the decision will not be immediate, but would allow the country to adjust supply chains while supporting the industry and consumers.

Following the US decision, Brent crude futures increased by $2.17, or 1.7%, to settle at $130.15 a barrel at 01:33 GMT. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures surged $1.57, or 1.3%, to reach $125.27 a barrel, according to Reuters.

The rally is also driven by expectations over the improbable return of Iranian crude into global markets, as talks have slowed on Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal.

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