A new sanctions package for Russian oil is needed

March 22, 2023

In the past two weeks, despite the existing sanctions, two alarming trends have been observed. The volume of Russian oil exports is increasing, and the discount from Brent is decreasing.

Unfortunately, this trend will continue if the following information is left unanswered. At the end of February, the Argus price agency introduced a new quotation for the Russian Urals.

Previously, Argus used the CIF (to EU ports) delivery terms to calculate the Urals quote, in which ownership of the goods passed at the port of destination (without logistic costs for delivery to the customer's door - these are different in different countries and always transparent).

Now, the new quotation (contrary to existing practices) is pegged to DAP (Delivered at (Indian) Port) and determined by surveying suppliers and traders. In other words, there is a room for manipulating the results of these surveys, and, accordingly, the level of the indicator. 

We now see an attempt of returning the selling price of Russian oil to the pre-sanctions level.


Maksym Bielawski

Leading Expert, Energy Programmes

Born in 1986 in Zhytomyr oblast


Zhytomyr State Technological University (2008)

Ph.D in Technical Science (2010)

Ivano-Frankivsk National Technical University of Oil and Gas (2012)

Author of 17 patents and 100 scientific works

Work Experience:

2008 – 2011 — Operator of Gas Infrastructure Units, Controller of Gas Transmission System in Rivne Division of PJSC "Ukrtransgas"

2011 – 2017 — Leading Engineer, Deputy Head of Press-Service, Head of Public Relation Department of PJSC "Ukrtransgas"

2017 – 2018 — HR Director of PJSC "Maine Gas Pipelines of Ukraine", Advisor to the Minister of Energy and Coal Industry of Ukraine

2021 — Director of Integrated Communications of NJSC "Naftogaz of Ukraine"