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Shell pledges Russian oil profits to Ukraine relief after backlash

The Telegraph

Shell pledges Russian oil profits to Ukraine relief after backlash

The British company defended the decision to buy oil from the country, saying it was difficult but necessary.

By Ben Gartside: 5 March 2022 • 11:51am

Shell has pledged to donate any profits it makes from discounted Russian oil to a Ukrainian disaster relief fund, following stinging criticism of its decision to keep buying tankers of crude as war rages.

Shell broke ranks with Western traders on Friday when it bought Russian crude for $28.50 a barrel less than the Dated Brent benchmark for physical oil, saving millions of pounds at a time when global prices are surging.

The company defended the decision on Saturday, saying it was “difficult” but necessary.

A spokesman said: “Without an uninterrupted supply of crude oil to refineries, the energy industry cannot assure continued provision of essential products to people across Europe over the weeks ahead. Cargoes from alternative sources would not have arrived in time to avoid disruptions to market supply.

“We will continue to choose alternatives to Russian oil wherever possible, but this cannot happen overnight because of how significant Russia is to global supply.”

At the start of this week, Shell pledged to end its tie-up with Russian state-owned Gazprom by selling its 27.5pc stake in the Sakhalin 2 liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant, and stop work on the Nord Stream 2 project in Germany, which was paused earlier this month.

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