Russia will not immediately demand rubles as a means of payment for the sale of gas to “unfriendly countries”.
President Vladimir Putin last week demanded that countries that have imposed sanctions against Russia over the war in Ukraine, such as EU member states and the United Kingdom. However, a Kremlin spokesman now says the switch to rubles for gas transactions is being phased in.
The spokesman said that the Russian government is also working out ideas to charge rubles for even more export goods.
Earlier on Wednesday, the chairman of the Russian lower house, Vyacheslav Volodin, warned the European Union that member states must quickly stock up on rubles to buy gas.
Many Western countries and companies condemned the demand to pay for gas in rubles, including Dutch energy companies. Germany labelled the move as a breach of contract because it had previously been agreed to settle in euros or dollars.