Japan comments on Russian oil ban — Analysis
Fumio Kishida, Japan’s Prime Minister, has stated that eliminating Russian oil reliance will be a slow process. Tokyo will try its best. “minimize”Its negative effect on both businesses and individuals. This comment was made shortly after G7 had agreed to curb oil imports coming from Russia in response to sanctions on the military campaign against Ukraine.
G7 is made up of the United States, Canada, Britain and France.
“For a country heavily dependent on energy imports, it’s a very difficult decision. But G7 coordination is most important at a time like now,”Kishida spoke to reporters Monday.
“As for the timing of the reduction or stoppage of [Russian] oil imports, we will consider it while gauging the actual situation,”He concluded. “We will take our time to take steps towards a phase-out.”
The prime minister said Tokyo will “minimize the adverse effects” of the phase-out on businesses and ordinary people.
Japan, a country of limited resources, imports Russian crude oil in order to diversify its sources. According to Kyodo News, Russia was responsible for 3.6% Japanese oil imports in 2021.
On Sunday, G7 nations met in virtual meetings to agree to eliminate or ban Russian oil. This was after the EU suggested this week that Russia would cease oil imports by the year’s end.
The European bloc’s plan, however, was reportedly later revised in order to allow Hungary and Slovakia to phase out Russian oil by the end of 2024, and the Czech Republic by the end of June of that year.
Hungary, whose economy heavily depends on Russian energy sources, repeated its determination to use its veto power against an immediate ban of Russian oil or gas.
Numerous countries including NATO members have placed severe sanctions against Russia. These include freezing its assets and hitting banks.
Russia attacked the neighboring state in late February, following Ukraine’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow’s eventual recognition of the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk. French and German protocols that were negotiated by the French helped to grant the regions of breakaway special status in the Ukrainian government.
Since then, the Kremlin demanded Ukraine declare itself neutral and vow to never join NATO’s military bloc. Kiev claims that the Russian invasion was unprovoked. It also denies any plans to take the republics with force.