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Canada does not buy crude from Russia but Justin Trudeau bans the import, European nations continue gas and oil imports from Russia

Justin Trudeau said that even though Canada is not dependent on Russia for oil, the ban on crude import will send a strong message

As the western nations continue to impose more and more sanctions against Russia, Canada has also joined the race to cripple the Russian economy for invading Ukraine. Taking some time off from brutal attacks on the democratic protests by truckers, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau has announced that his govt will stop importing crude oil from Russia.

In an address on Monday, PM Justin Trudeau said that even though Canada is not dependent on Russia for oil, the ban will send a strong message. “While Canada has imported very little amounts in recent years, this measure sends a powerful message,” he said.

He also announced that Canadian banks would be barred from transactions with the Russian central bank. The Canadian PM announced sending more military equipment to Ukraine to fight Russian forces, including anti-tank weapons, body armours, helmets, gas masks, night-vision goggles. Canada has already sent three shipments of lethal and non-lethal equipment to Ukraine.

The champion of freedom of speech Justin Trudeau also announced that Canada will be banning Russian media houses, including Russia Today, in Canada.

While Justin Trudeau plans to send a ‘powerful message’ by banning crude oil import from Russia even though they import ‘very less’, the fact is, it is not ‘very less’. In fact, the import of crude oil from Russia by Canada is actually nil. As per Canadian Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, his country has not imported any crude oil from Russia since 2019.

It is notable that, unlike Europe which is dependent on Russian oil and gas, Canada is not, as it itself is a major oil producer and exporter. Canada is the fourth-largest oil producer after USA, Russia and Saudi Arabia. Therefore, Russia’s oil export to Canada is negligible.

Most importantly, while several European nations have imposed sanctions against Russia over the operation in Ukraine, they continue to import gas and oil from Russia. These nations are paying hundreds of millions of dollars every day to Russia for gas and oil imports, despite other sanctions in other sectors.

Around 40% of Europe’s gas and oil needs are fulfilled by imports from Russia, and it is not easy to find alternate sources of such a huge volume of oil in such a short time.

In fact, Russian oil export to Europe has increased after the invasion of Ukraine began, and rising fuel prices have meant they are actually earning more from oil and gas export. As several European nations have decided to shut down nuclear power plants and coal-based power plants, they are more dependent on Russian gas than before. Although these countries aim to completely move to renewable energy, it will take decades to achieve that objective, and they need fossil fuel till then.

It has been speculated that despite announcing sanctions, these countries will not be able to stop importing gas and oil, which means Russia will continue to earn millions of Euros daily, to fund its operations in Ukraine. Although eventually European nations may find alternate sources, that will take some time, it is unlikely that they will be able to stop imports from Russia before the end of the war.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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