The Russian state is preparing to step in and beat European Union sanctions by providing its own insurance guarantees to allow tankers to trade its oil around the world.

The move follows an announcement by the EU that it will ban insurers from providing cover to tankers exporting Russian crude.

The sanctions are intended to prevent Moscow from finding alternative markets after the EU carries out its plan to cut 90% of oil imports from the country by the end of the year because of its invasion of Ukraine.