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International relations

Pakistan to buy discounted Russian oil to ease economic pains

Experts downplay worries over irking U.S., Islamabad faces long wait for LNG

A crude oil tanker is anchored at a terminal near the Russian port of Nakhodka on Dec. 4. Pakistan is poised to import oil from Russia by sea.   © Reuters

ISLAMABAD -- Pakistan will purchase oil from Russia at a discount starting in 2023, Islamabad's minister of state for petroleum announced this week, raising hopes of some respite for the South Asian country's cash-strapped economy.

Last week, Musadik Malik, the country's petroleum minister, visited Russia to negotiate as Moscow faces intensifying global export curbs as punishment for its invasion of Ukraine. Upon his return to Islamabad on Monday, Malik told reporters that "Russia has decided to provide Pakistan crude [oil] at discounted rates. Russia will also give [gasoline] and diesel to Pakistan at lower prices."

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