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Italy working for firm EU response to Russia's rouble gas payment order

Italy working for firm EU response to Russia's rouble gas payment order
Italy working for firm EU response to Russia's rouble gas payment order   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2022
By Reuters

MILAN – The Italian government is in contact with its European partners to give a firm response to Russia after a decree introduced by Moscow requiring European importers to pay roubles for Russian gas.

“The prime minister will speak to German Chancellor [Olaf]Scholz this evening and bilateral talks are under way between energy ministers,” Italy’s Ecology Transition Minister Roberto Cingolani said in a statement on Thursday.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Thursday requiring foreign buyers to pay roubles for Russian gas from April 1 or see their contracts halted, a move described as “blackmail” by European states.

Cingolani said Italy’s current gas reserve levels would allow economic activity in the country to continue “even in the case of sudden and unlikely disruptions to Russian supplies.”