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March 2, 2022updated 23 Mar 2022 12:03pm

UK weighing options to reduce reliance on Russian gas imports

British firm Centrica also plans to cut ties with Russian firms, mainly Gazprom, ‘as a matter of urgency’.

Understand the impact of the Ukraine conflict from a cross-sector perspective with the Global Data Executive Briefing: Ukraine Conflict

The UK government has started an urgent review on ways to reduce its reliance on Russian gas imports and energy companies in the light of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

As part of the review, UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy Kwasi Kwarteng met with the heads of some the country’s major energy groups including ScottishPower, National Grid, and Centrica.

The review would require the assessment of ties between Russian energy firm Gazprom and the UK’s public and private sectors, according to energy industry leaders.

British energy company Centrica is planning to exit its gas supply agreements with Russian companies, mainly Gazprom, ‘as a matter of urgency’, reported Reuters, in response to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

The British firm is assessing ways to terminate the medium-term contract with Gazprom’s trading division, Gazprom Marketing & Trading, according to Bloomberg News.

Centrica CEO Chris O’Shea, in an emailed statement, said: “We are working through the details of how best to do this, additionally we will ensure we are compliant with all relevant sanctions.”

Following Russia’s invasion on Ukraine, several UK energy companies, including Shell and BP, have announced plans to exit businesses from the energy-rich country.

Last week, the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the government would assess ways to reduce the surging gas and oil prices. The commodity prices have increased in the recent days, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Earlier this month, Russian troops attacked a natural gas pipeline in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv.

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