Welcome to the Brussels Edition, Bloomberg’s daily briefing on what matters most in the heart of the European Union.
The EU’s reliance on Russian energy is again in focus after the bloc said it’s working on additional sanctions to penalize Moscow for what appear to be war crimes in Ukraine. After the horrors allegedly committed in towns outside Kyiv, calls are increasing to start hitting Russia where it really hurts: its lucrative exports of oil, coal and gas. Lithuania is trying to lead by example, becoming the first EU country to end its natural-gas dependency. A French economic study showed that stopping Russian energy imports would have a “modest” impact for France and a “moderate” one for Germany. The hit would be greater for countries like Lithuania, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Finland and the Czech Republic. Diplomats are due to discuss additional sanctions tomorrow but those will likely stop short of including energy for now, amounting instead to a tightening of existing measures.
— Natalia Drozdiak