In Moscow parliament has heard talk of Europe importing gas from the US as nothing more than a “bluff”.
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in an address to politicians shown live on television gave his reaction to Europe’s threat of cutting back on gas from Russia amid the prospect of further sanctions over the Ukraine crisis. Moscow he said has its eyes on other markets.
“We are interested in diversifying today more so than ever before. Therefore we are implementing solutions for the export of gas and oil to Asian and Pacific countries, first and foremost China, but also Japan and other countries.”
Currently around a third of Europe’s gas is supplied by Russia. Medvedev’s speech comes as Britain said Moscow was using its status as an energy superpower to hold other countries to ransom.
The country’s Energy Secretary Ed Davey called for the G7 group of industrialised economies to use their meeting next month to promote a global plan to develop alternative energy sources.
Medvedev also claimed some Russian banks had been shut out of international payments systems and said he believed such actions, “must not go unpunished.” He added it was a stimulus for Moscow to create a national payments system.