The UK has announced it will phase out the import of Russian oil and oil products by the end of the year as part of its sanctions on Moscow for invading Ukraine, the Business Secretary has announced.

On Tuesday, March 8 Kwasi Kwarteng announced the transition would give the market and businesses enough time to find suitable replacements. 

He said the UK only uses four percent of Russian natural gas and eight percent of Russian imports, however, he would be looking to end these completely. 

Writing on Twitter, Mr Kwarteng said: "NEW – the UK will phase out the import of Russian oil and oil products by the end of 2022.

"This transition will give the market, businesses and supply chains more than enough time to replace Russian imports – which make up 8% of UK demand.

"Businesses should use this year to ensure a smooth transition so that consumers will not be affected.

"The government will also work with companies through a new Taskforce on Oil to support them to make use of this period in finding alternative supplies.

He added that the majority of imports came from the US, Netherlands and the Gulf, which he was working with to secure further supplies. 

Bournemouth Echo: Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng (PA)Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng (PA)

"The market has already begun to ostracise Russian oil, with nearly 70% of it currently unable to find a buyer," he said.

"Finally, while the UK is not dependent on Russian natural gas - 4% of our supply - I am exploring options to end this altogether."

The news comes after President Biden announced the US would ban all imports of Russian oil, gas and energy.