The Western press and analysts expected that the Russian response to the sanctions of the West in relation to Russian oil would be much more severe, but the document published on December 27 was in many ways surprised the energy analytical community – Moscow did not introduce any tough measures in response to sanction.
Bloomberg notes that the market calmly reacted to the publication of the Decree of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin: instead of a sharp increase in energy prices, which Russian officials have repeatedly warned, world oil prices, on the contrary, began to decline.
On Tuesday, the American benchmark WTI closed at a price of $ 79.83 per barrel, and the North Sea Brent – at $ 84.99. During trading on Wednesday, December 28, oil prices continue to decline. The agency notes that the decrease began due to the absence in the document of strict measures to counteract the “ceiling” – it does not have the introduction of the “bottom of prices”, a direct ban on exports to countries that supported sanctions, as well as the maximum size of discounts on Russian oil.
Financial Times notes that the document is formulated so vague that it allows the supply within the “ceiling” if the “ceiling” itself is not mentioned in the contract. Moreover, in exceptional cases, the president reserves the right to resolve the supply of oil or oil products even within the framework of the “Western ceiling” of prices. The publication suggests that this loophole is left for India and China – key oil buyers after the outcome of European buyers.
The rejection of strict measures in response to the Western ceiling may indicate that Western sanctions began to pose a serious threat to the Russian economy and the budget in particular. Capital Economics Expert Nicolas Farr in a commentary for CNBC notes that the reduction in oil exports from Russia can be seen now, although the sanctions of the West have just begun to work.
Western sanctions involve the introduction of oil prices from Russia in the amount of $ 60 per barrel. If the supply is sold at a price above, it is deprived of Western insurance, financial, logistics and other services, which significantly complicates deliveries. Restrictions have already significantly reduced oil exports from Russia.