After deal criticised

Shell puts profits from Russian oil trade into fund

Shell has been criticised over the deal

Oil major Shell will donate profits from any Russian oil it purchases towards the Ukraine humanitarian aid fund.

The company’s pledge came after it bought a cargo of Russian crude oil at a record low discount on Friday.

The deal, which did not violate Western sanctions on Moscow, was nonetheless criticised by Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, who tweeted: “I am told Shell discreetly bought some Russian oil yesterday. One question to @Shell: doesn’t Russian oil smell (of) Ukrainian blood for you?”

Shell said in a statement that it would choose alternatives to Russian oil wherever possible, but this could not happen overnight because of the significance of Russia to global supply.

It added: “We didn’t take this decision lightly and we understand the strength of feeling around it.”

Profits from the purchase will go to a dedicated fund to help alleviate the hardship suffered by the people of Ukraine.

The Reuters news agency reports that Russian exporters have in recent days faced severe problems with credit lines, shipping and insurance, resulting in delays and cancellations to their attempts to find buyers for Russian crude.

More join Great Cancellation

Visa said it is stopping transactions in Russia and Visa cards issued by financial institutions outside the country will no longer work in Russia, the company said in a statement.  

The announcement follows similar action by payments giant PayPal and came after several major tech companies and retailers shut down their operations as part of the ‘Great Cancellation’ of Putin’s regime.

Samsung Electronics, the world’s biggest memory chip maker and the leading smartphone seller in Russia, has suspended shipments to the country.

Inditex, the Spanish company which owns high street brand Zara and sports company, and Puma have both announced they will close their stores in Russia.

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