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Russia is considering constructing oil storage facilities and new exporting outlets to improve oil sales that have been impacted by the Western sanctions following the invasion of Ukraine, reported Reuters, citing officials.

Since the imposition of Western sanctions, Russia has struggled with crude oil and oil products sales due to difficulty financing trade deals and chartering vessels.

Last month, the US also imposed a ban on oil imports from Russia, further impacting its oil production and exports.

The new oil storage facilities are expected to provide Russia with more flexibility for production and exports.

Russian Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin was cited by the news agency as saying to reporters: “Some companies have been engaged in such projects and have been implementing it.”

Russian State Commission on minerals head Igor Shpurov told reporters that the country is considering the development of storage facilities in underground salt caverns, in East Siberia.

The construction of the storage facilities, which would have a minimum capacity of 100 million tonnes, or more than 700 million barrels, is expected to take up to four years to complete.

Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin told government agencies to present a plan by 1 June 2022 to expand transport infrastructure to countries across Africa, Latin America, and Asia Pacific.

Amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict, Germany recently said it aims to end oil imports from Russia this year.

The country imported approximately 35% of its oil requirements from Russia prior to the invasion. The figure has been reduced to 25%.