Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its economic consequences – in particular soaring energy and food prices – have been at the heart of discussions between the heads of state and government of the Group of the Big Seven. industrialized countries gathered since Sunday in the Bavarian Alps.
A cap in oil prices would further increase the pressure exerted by the West on Russia since the start of the war in Ukraine.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz warned at the summit’s closing press conference that sanctions against Russia would only be lifted when Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted his plans in Ukraine were doomed.
The idea of the capping mechanism, initially put forward by the United States, would be to link financial services, insurance and the transport of oil cargoes to a price cap. A carrier or an importer wishing to benefit from these services would then have to commit to selling Russian oil at a capped price.
The G7 has invited all like-minded countries to join this mechanism.
Westerners see the cap as a way to prevent Moscow from profiting from the surge in energy prices caused by the invasion of Ukraine, which partly reduces the scope of the sanctions imposed on Russia.
Russia’s oil export earnings in May soared despite lower volumes, the International Energy Agency noted in its monthly report in June.
Russia ‘cannot and should not’ win the war
neither can nor should win the war it launched more than four months ago in Ukraine, underlined French President Emmanuel Macron at the end of the G7, while pointing the finger at the
war profiteerscertain producers and speculators who make
oil and gas superprofits.
The leaders further agreed to work towards a ban on Russian gold imports, a European official said on Tuesday.
The G7 has also pledged to devote 4.5 billion dollars (C$5.8 billion) to the fight against hunger in the world in the face of food insecurity fueled by soaring prices for agricultural products, other consequence of the conflict.
More than half of the sum will be provided by the United States, a senior US official said. This money will be used to fight hunger in 47 countries and to fund regional organizations, he said.
Some NGOs considered this amount far too modest. The United Nations World Food Program says it needs $22.2 billion (C$28.6 billion) this year.
With regard to China, the G7 communiqué called on the country to abandon its plans for expansion in the South China Sea and expressed its serious human rights concerns, particularly on the issue of forced labor in Tibet and Xinjiang.