US warns India on imports of Russia energy

by | April 11, 2022 02:13 | News

US President Joe Biden will meet virtually with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the White House says, at a time when the United States has made clear it does not want an uptick in Russian energy imports by India.

“President Biden will continue our close consultations on the consequences of Russia’s brutal war against Ukraine and mitigating its destabilising impact on global food supply and commodity markets,” press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement on Sunday.

Daleep Singh, US Deputy National Security Adviser for International Economics, who visited India recently, said the US will not set any “red line” for India on its energy imports from Russia but does not want to see a “rapid acceleration” in purchases.

Lured by steep discounts following sanctions on Russian entities, India has bought at least 13 million barrels of Russian crude oil since the country invaded Ukraine in late February. 

That compared with 16 million barrels for the whole of last year, data compiled by Reuters shows.

This meeting will precede the “US-India 2+2 Ministerial” meeting between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, India External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar and India Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the White House said. 

Biden, who last spoke to Modi in March, recently said that only India among the Quad group of countries was “somewhat shaky” in acting against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine. 

India has tried to balance its ties with Russia and other major powers but unlike other members of the Quad countries – the United States, Japan and Australia – it has not imposed sanctions on Russia.

Russia has long been India’s biggest supplier of defence equipment despite growing purchases from the US in the past decade. 

Defence analysts say Russian supplies are more cost competitive and vital for India as it faces a superior Chinese military.

Daleep Singh during his visit said the US was ready to help India diversify its energy and defence supplies. 

India is the world’s third-biggest oil importer and consumer.

He also warned that the US does not want its allies helping resurrect the rouble, which nosedived immediately after the war began but has recovered in recent days.

Ukraine on Sunday said it was seeking another round of European Union sanctions against Russia and more military aid from its allies as it braces for a major Russian offensive in the east of the country.

Biden and Modi will also discuss co-operation on a range of issues including ending the COVID-19 pandemic, countering the climate crisis, strengthening the global economy and upholding a free, open, rules-based international order to bolster security, democracy, and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific, Psaki said.

Don't pay so you can read it.

Pay so everyone can.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This