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RIYADH: Oil prices rose 2 percent on Friday but notched their second straight weekly decline after countries announced plans to release crude from their strategic stocks.
Brent crude futures settled up $2.20, or 2.19 percent, at $102.78 a barrel. US West Texas Intermediate, or WTI, crude futures rose $2.23 to $98.26.
For the week, Brent dropped 1.5 percent while WTI slid 1 percent. For several weeks, the benchmarks have been at their most volatile since June 2020.
Germany to stop Russian oil import
Germany could end Russian oil imports this year, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said, signaling the urgency driving Europe’s biggest economy to wean itself off energy from Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.
Scholz was responding to a journalist’s question about whether he felt a sense of shame that EU countries were paying Russia billions of euros for fossil fuels.
“We are actively working to get independent from the import of Russian oil, and we think that we will be able to make it during this year,” Scholz said during a news conference in London with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Ukraine calls for more sanctions
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said Russia’s aggression was never limited to just Ukraine and the whole of Europe was a target as he urged the West to impose a complete embargo on Russian energy products and to supply Ukraine with more weapons.
Meanwhile, Ukraine has banned all imports from Russia, one of its key trading partners before the war with annual imports valued at about $6 billion and called on other countries to follow and impose harsher economic sanctions on Moscow.
“Today we officially announced a complete termination of trade in goods with the aggressor state,” Economy Minister Yulia Svyrydenko wrote on her Facebook page on Saturday.
“From now on, no Russian Federation’s products will be able to be imported into the territory of our state.”
Oil and gas giant Shell idles 2 Russian-owned LNG ships to curb sanctions, criticism Challenges ahead as KSA looks to long-term OPEC-Russia oil deal
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