'No short-term replacement' for Russian energy imports - Kovács
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Zoltán Kovács, the government's international spokesman, said Hungary can't replace the gas and oil it imports from Russia in the short term in an interview broadcast on the UK's BBC Radio 4 on Monday evening, according to a report by state news wire MTI.
Kovács said there would be "no alternatives" to Russian gas and crude for the country for the coming 3-5 years.
He added that all proposals on sanctions extending to Russian energy that the Hungarian government had seen so far would cause the Hungarian economy to grind to halt.
He noted that 65% of landlocked Hungary's crude and 85% of its gas comes from Russia, via pipeline. That can't be changed in a couple of months, he added.
Kovács said a compromise on European Union sanctions against Russia needs to be mutually acceptable and based on the principle of cooperation as well as practical solutions.
The economy can't be fuelled, petrol tanks can't be topped up and homes can't be heated with ideology, he added.
Asked whether Hungary isn't financing the war in Ukraine by buying Russian oil and gas, Kovács said finger-pointing shouldn't be directed at Hungary as nearly all European countries are paying for Russian energy for lack of alternative sources.
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