gros162_SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMISAFP via Getty Images_LNGtanker Sebastien Salom-Gomis/AFP via Getty Images

Europe’s Gas Conundrum

If Europe is willing to pay the price of expensive LNG imports, it could severely undermine Russia’s ability to earn hard currency via gas exports to finance the war in Ukraine. But this would carry high costs for Europe, too.

BRUSSELS – In a matter of months, the European Union has reduced its dependence on Russian oil so much that it is now ready to impose an embargo. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has announced a plan to ban Russian crude oil imports to most of the EU in the next six months, and refined oil products by the end of the year. But to have a meaningful impact on Russia’s budget, Europe must also end its dependency on Russian gas. This will prove much more difficult to achieve.