This would further increase coal prices in the EU, which are already close to record highs. European suppliers are likely to try to find a suitable alternative to Russian supplies as soon as possible as a result.
Would this have for the EU the same consequences as a ban on oil or gas imports?
Probably not. Europe is less dependent on coal than on the aforementioned commodities, and it can be assumed that although a ban would raise prices and hurt Russia, it would not be so drastic for Europe. Most coal importers in the EU expected this move might come and have previously announced efforts to move away from reliance on Russia.
The EU pays approximately $850 million a day for Russian oil and gas. By contrast, the EU pays approximately just $20 million for coal. In fact, according to the CRU Group, coal-fired power generation is almost half the cost of natural gas.
Where to find new suppliers?
The first EU efforts to increase domestic coal production are expected to come from Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic. After that, imports from the US and Colombia are also expected to increase.
However, it is not just the EU. In Asia, there is also talk of moving away from Russia. Japan also announced on Friday that it plans to ban coal imports from Russia, and two South Korean energy companies have already decided to cut off relations with the country altogether.
This could be another inconvenience for Russia. Although gas and oil exports are still its main economic focus, any further bans against their commodity exports could bring it closer to possible bankruptcy.