EU countries imported nearly 52 million tons of coal from Russia in 2021. (file photo)
An EU embargo on the import of Russian coal goes into effect on August 11 after a midnight deadline for the transition period agreed by bloc members four months ago.
The ban is part of the fifth package of EU sanctions to punish the Russian economy since President Vladimir Putin ordered tens of thousands of Russian troops into Ukraine in late February.
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The coal embargo is the first measure among the seven rounds of EU sanctions so far to hit energy supplies, which have been particularly hard-hit along with grain exports by the Ukraine conflict.
The 120-day grace period for compliance since the approval of the coal ban in April expires at midnight on August 10.
The European Commission estimates that the coal cutoff could cost Russia around $8 billion a year.
EU countries imported nearly 52 million tons of coal from Russia in 2021, up from 41 million tons the previous year.
But overall coal imports to the EU fell by almost half from 2014 to 2020 under pressure from climate-change targets and efforts to find cleaner energy alternatives.
The EU's subsequent ban on Russian oil is slated to come into effect at the end of the year.
The EU sanctions are part of an unprecedented international response to the biggest military invasion in Europe since World War II, targeting oil and gas, SWIFT payments, overflights and travel, broadcasting, and a range of other areas.