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What would success look like?
Buyers in China and India and other countries are hoovering up more Russian crude, making up for the lost trade with Europe. But knowing that Russia has few alternative markets, buyers have been able to drive down the price. "The discounts that Russia has to give, that its partners can demand, are strong and are here to stay," said one senior European Commission official. Russian Urals crude is trading at around $50 per barrel, around $30 below the benchmark Brent crude price.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Feb 8th, 2023 at 08:16:28 AM EST
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Politico.eu.com | Putin is staring at defeat in his gas war with Europe, 16 Feb 10-pack sanctions
...A senior European Commission official attributed Europe's success in securing its gas supply to a combination of planning and luck.

"A good part of the success is due to unusually mild weather conditions and to China being out of the market [due to COVID restrictions]," the official said. "But demand reduction, storage policy, and infrastructure work helped significantly."

Ending the winter heating season with such healthy reserves -- above 50 percent of the EU's roughly 100bcm total storage capacity [?] -- removes any lingering fears of a gas shortage in the short term. It also eases concerns about Europe's energy security going into next winter.

The positive figures underlie the more optimistic outlook presented by EU leaders in recent days, with Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson [!] saying on Tuesday that Europe had "won the first battle" of the "energy war" with Russia....

by Cat on Thu Feb 16th, 2023 at 05:06:58 PM EST
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S&P | US increases pressure on Russia [BWAH!] with 200% aluminum tariff, 24 Feb
..."The Russian aluminum industry is a key part of Russia's defense industrial base and has played a major role in supplying Russia with weapons and ammunition used in the war," the White House said in a statement. "In addition, Russia's war against Ukraine has caused global energy prices to rise, causing direct harm to the United States aluminum industry."
Furthermore, the US will also impose the 200% tariff on aluminum articles and derivative products from other countries "where any amount of primary aluminum used in the manufacture of the aluminum articles is smelted in Russia ... or the derivative aluminum articles are cast in Russia." This expanded form of the tariff will take effect on April 10.
"fifth largest source of imported aluminum in the United States"
The Commerce Department said the new Section 232 tariff and higher PNTR suspension tariff will effectively "increase tariffs on Russian aluminum up to 270%, increasing pressure on Russia while minimizing costs on us < wipes tears > and protecting our industries and workers."
The US imported nearly 210,000 mt of aluminum products from Russia in 2022 out of a total import volume of 6.36 million mt from all origins, according to aluminum import monitoring data compiled by Commerce's International Trade Administration. Imports from Russia represented about 3.3% of all import volume.

US aluminum imports from Russia in 2022 rose from about 180,000 mt in 2020, but have fallen drastically since they exceeded 750,000 mt/year in 2016 and 2017.

whitehouse | A Proclamation on Adjusting Imports of Aluminum Into the United States, 24 Feb
4. The Secretary has informed me that the capacity utilization in the domestic aluminum industry remains well below the target capacity utilization level recommended in the [TRUMPY] January 2018 report. The Secretary has also informed me that two of the five remaining aluminum smelters in the United States are in danger of closing as a result of continued high levels of aluminum imports and high energy prices.
"Primary aluminum" derivatives have entered the room.
these rates of duty, which are in addition to any other duties, fees, exactions, and charges applicable to such imported derivative aluminum articles or steel articles, shall apply to imports of derivative aluminum articles described in the Annex to this proclamation from all countries except Argentina, Australia, Canada, the member countries of the European Union, and Mexico and to imports of derivative steel articles described in the Annex to this proclamation from all countries except Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, the member countries of the European Union, Mexico, and South Korea
by Cat on Sun Feb 26th, 2023 at 04:58:49 PM EST
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