Russia loses Europe as its largest energy client ‘forever,’ says IEA head

30 November 2022, 01:51 PM
Fatih Birol, the IEA head (Photo:File photo / Reuters)

Fatih Birol, the IEA head (Photo:File photo / Reuters)

Russia has lost Europe as its largest energy client “forever,” the Reuters news agency quoted the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Fatih Birol, as saying during an energy conference on Nov. 29.

Commenting on the European Union’s decision to ban Russian crude imports from Dec. 5 and Russian oil products from Feb. 5, Birol said the IEA expects Russian crude production to be curtailed by some 2 million barrels of oil per day by the end of the first quarter next year and “there is a need to replace that oil.”

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The IEA head also named three main reasons why Russia will not be able to win its energy confrontation with the West, as reported by the Telegram messenger channel BILD in Russian:

1. Before the war, 75% of exported Russian gas and 55% of exported Russian oil went to European countries, but this client has been lost, and Russia will have to spend decades building new pipelines to supply gas and oil to Asian countries.

2. Russia will not be able to redirect gas and oil supplies even by sea, since it takes only about five days for a Russian tanker with energy resources to reach Europe, but from 65 to 75 days to reach Asia.

3️. Russian energy giants will need many of the latest technologies to develop geologically complex oil and gas deposits. The fact that most Western technological companies have left the Russian market will make it difficult not only to increase, but also to maintain the former level of production, said Birol.

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