The ban on the maritime transport of Russian petroleum products to third countries, as well as the provision of certain related services, do not apply to petroleum products purchased at or below the relevant price cap levels. (Earlier, the price cap on Russian crude oil was set to 60 dollars per barrel and took effect on 5 December 2022, see our previous WR Sanctions Alert from that date.)
Further, the Price Cap Coalition have agreed to a wind-down period, in that the prohibition does not apply to (or specific exemptions are made for) Russian petroleum products (purchased at any price) that that were loaded onto the vessel prior to 5 February 2023 and unloaded at the (final) port of destination prior to 1 April 2023. Certain nuances apply to the implementation of this winddown in the different regimes, including with regards to time zones, reporting and documentary requirements and possible force majeure exemptions.
For more information on EU implementation of the price caps, see the relevant legal acts in the EU Journal at this link, and a press release from the Council of the EU at this link. In addition, certain clarifications relating to the price cap have been made in the updated Commission Consolidated FAQs, including more details on services falling outside the scope of prohibited “technical assistance”.
In the US, the price caps and wind-down period have been implemented by way of two OFAC determinations which can be found at this link. OFAC have also issued an updated Guidance on Implementation of the Price Cap Policy for Crude Oil and Petroleum Products of Russian Federation Origin.
In the UK, OFSI have issued a General License to implement the price caps, and a General License implementing the wind-down period. OFSI have also updated its industry guidance on UK Maritime Services Prohibition and Oil Price Cap.