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‘Unfriendly’ West delaying payments for Russian energy – Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that certain Western countries are failing to pay on time for the delivery of Russian energy.

“Banks from most ‘unfriendly’ countries are delaying the transfer of payments,” the head of state said.

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According to Putin, despite the calls to reduce energy supplies, Western nations are admitting that they cannot do without Russian energy resources. They are thus “driving up prices and destabilizing the market,” he said, warning that Moscow will redirect its energy eastward.

Western attempts to squeeze out energy supplies will inevitably affect the entire global economy, Putin said, adding that there’s no rational replacement for Russian gas in Europe right now.

“Initially, serious experts and analysts warned, and publicly said that an accelerated green transition would be impossible to implement in practice without great costs. This is how everything turned out in practice,” he said. “And now there is a wonderful reason to cover up their own miscalculations and blame everything on Russia.”

The Russian president stressed that the task has already been set to switch to national currencies in payments for energy, and to gradually move away from the dollar and the euro.

“In general, we intend to radically increase the share of settlements in national currencies in foreign trade. And the key task here is to prepare our foreign exchange market for such a transition, so any foreign currency can freely and in the required amount be exchanged for Russian rubles.”

Putin also set three key tasks for the near future for the country’s oil and gas industry. First of all, it is necessary to ensure a sustainable supply of energy resources to the domestic market and increase supplies for Russian consumers, he said. Secondly, exports should be diversified and reoriented to fast-growing markets in the south and east. Thirdly, he ordered the development of deep oil and gas processing.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT’s business section

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