Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia, has warned against any attempt by the EU to control the price of Russian gas by threatening to fully stop flows and has hinted that a deal allowing Ukrainian grain to be exported to international markets would be interrupted.
When addressing an economic conference in the Russian Far East late on Wednesday, Putin referred to the EU’s proposed restriction on Russian gas prices as “yet another stupidity, another non-market decision that has no future.” According to the Russian president, such a move by Europe might lead to more price increases.
Regarding the increased cost Europe is paying to stock up on American LNG as a replacement, Putin added that Russian piped gas is “many times more competitive than the liquefied natural gas shipped across the ocean.”
“Political decisions that contradict contracts,” he promised to ignore. The EU will be meeting to discuss the price cap on Friday.
“We won’t be supplying anything if it runs counter to our interests. Those who are imposing whatsoever on us are not in a position to tell us what they want. Let them think about it.”
Putin also threatened to scuttle an UN-mediated agreement that has seen Turkey mediate grain shipments from Odesa to international markets via Istanbul, implying that only developed nations are receiving this grain. To prevent a global food catastrophe brought on by massive amounts of Ukrainian grain being prevented from reaching ports, Ukraine and Russia reached an agreement with Turkey and the UN in July.
Putin referred to the grain deal as “another outrageous deceit” and promised to “have a word with the Turkish President,” claiming that Russia and other underdeveloped nations were left out of the arrangement’s benefits. Although he indicated that he would be seeking concessions, the Russian president stated that Moscow would continue with the agreement for the time being.