Economic Catastrophe Continues To Sweep Across Europe
June 15, 2022 (EIRNS)—With the help of the insane sanctions against Russia, economic catastrophe continues to sweep across Europe.
• Latvia has joined Poland’s caravan back to the Middle Ages. After suspending Russian energy imports, Latvian residents are now lining up to receive state permits to collect brushwood left over from logging operations. According to government authorities, interest in the licenses, which are free, has grown fivefold in the past month. The Latvian energy company Latvijas Gaze had previously warned consumers that natural gas costs for households would jump by nearly 90%, which led to a large increase in people purchasing wood-burning stoves and a shortage of wood pellets for fuel on the Latvian market.
• Serbia will not be able to import Russian oil after November 1 due to EU sanctions, President Aleksandar Vucic said on June 14, “and God knows what sanctions will be introduced by then.” Serbia imports 70% of its total oil consumption from Russia. “Dozens of new problems emerge every day. ... We consume 350 tons of fuel oil daily, and in winter we will spend seven times more. We need to find fuel oil, there is not enough fuel oil.... Only by imposing sanctions on Russian oil, they directly took $600 million from our pocket! $600 million was taken directly from the pockets of Serbian citizens, this is within a year. People in Serbia should know this. Kirkuk, Iraqi oil, is $31 per barrel more expensive. They took $600 million from us, and we still have to invest additional money for gas,” Vucic said.
• The United Kingdom population’s disposable income is forecast to drop by 2.3% this year, the largest annual decline since record-keeping began in the mid-1950s, according to a new report published June 13 by the Confederation of British Industry (CBI). The geopolitical situation is also destabilizing the U.K. economy, CBI chief economist Rain Newton-Smith said. “This is a tough set of statistics to stomach. War in Ukraine, a global pandemic, continued strains on supply chains—all preceded by Brexit—has proven to be a toxic recipe for U.K. growth.”
• Germany hit an annual inflation rate of 7.9% in May, according to the country’s Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), RT reports. This is close to a 50-year high. Natural gas prices increased by 55.2% year-on-year, and fuel prices rose 41%, Destatis reports. RT adds that, according to recent polls, one in six Germans is skipping meals.