Russia: EU states resolve on twelfth sanctions bundle | EUROtoday

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Ukraine warfare
Diamonds, oil, journey: EU states resolve on twelfth sanctions bundle towards Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin: The EU needs to hit his warfare chest for the invasion of Ukraine with a twelfth sanctions bundle

© Mikhail Klimentyev / Pool Sputnik Kremlin / AP / DPA

The dozen is full: Almost 22 months after Russia’s assault on Ukraine, the EU has selected a twelfth sanctions bundle. Among different issues, it includes a really useful Russian export good.

Russian diamonds and diamond jewellery will now not be allowed to be imported into the European Union sooner or later. The 27 member states selected a corresponding import ban on Monday as a part of the twelfth sanctions bundle because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. It is meant to deprive Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin of an vital supply of revenue and thus restrict his skill to finance the warfare towards Ukraine. The EU Commission lately estimated Russia’s revenue from the sale of diamonds at round 4 billion euros per yr.

According to the choice, the import ban will apply from January 1st to diamonds coming immediately from Russia. By September 1st, Russian diamonds and jewellery merchandise processed in third international locations resembling India have to be steadily banned from the market. To guarantee effectiveness, a testing and certification system for tough diamonds is to be arrange inside the group of seven western industrialized international locations (G7) with a purpose to hint the origin of the diamonds.

The motive why a ban on the import of Russian diamonds was solely now determined was, amongst different issues, the preliminary resistance from Belgium. The Flemish port metropolis of Antwerp has been one of many world’s most vital diamond facilities because the sixteenth century. Russia is taken into account the world’s largest producer of tough diamonds. In 2021, the state diamond miner Alrosa had revenues of 332 billion rubles (round 3.4 billion euros).

EU tightens worth caps for oil from Russia

In addition to the diamond ban, the twelfth EU sanctions bundle supplies for enhancements to the lately barely efficient worth cap for Russian oil exports to 3rd international locations. In order to extend its effectiveness, the monitoring measures and documentation necessities are to be tightened in keeping with the plans. In the long run, it might develop into harder for transport corporations to take part in circumventing Russia sanctions with impunity.

The worth cap got here into drive a few yr in the past along with a far-reaching ban on the import of Russian oil into the EU. It is definitely supposed to drive Russia to promote oil to patrons in different international locations for a most of 60 US {dollars} per barrel (159 liters). However, in keeping with researchers on the Kyiv School of Economics, current knowledge prompt that greater than 99 % of Russian crude exported by sea in October could have been bought at a worth of greater than $60 a barrel. This might be potential as a result of faux worth certificates are offered, they write. In addition, Russia might more and more depend on a “shadow fleet,” i.e. ships that aren’t owned by Western transport corporations or not insured by Western insurance coverage corporations.

In order to implement the value cap for exports to non-EU international locations, it was determined that maritime transport companies vital for Russian oil exports might solely be supplied with impunity if the value of the exported oil didn’t exceed the value cap. Western transport corporations can proceed to make use of their ships to move Russian oil to international locations resembling India, China or Egypt. The regulation additionally applies to different vital companies resembling insurance coverage, technical help and financing and brokerage companies.

The hope is that the value cap will result in leisure on the vitality markets in the long run and also will relieve strain on third international locations. In addition, it ought to be ensured that Russia can now not profit from will increase in oil costs and thus fill its warfare chest.

More than 140 extra people and organizations sanctioned

The new sanctions additionally embody commerce restrictions on different items. Specifically, this includes, for instance, a ban on imports of uncooked supplies for metal manufacturing, processed aluminum merchandise and different steel items, in addition to export restrictions on items resembling lithium batteries, thermostats and sure chemical compounds. There can be a brand new import ban on liquefied petroleum gasoline (LPG) from Russia, which, in keeping with the Commission, impacts imports of a couple of billion euros per yr. According to a grandfather clause, present contracts also needs to be affected after a most of twelve months.

In addition to the financial punitive measures, in keeping with the EU, sanctions are deliberate towards greater than 140 different individuals and organizations that help the Russian warfare of aggression towards Ukraine. They would then now not have the ability to eliminate property present within the EU. The affected individuals will even now not be allowed to enter the EU. For instance, they’re mentioned to return from the Russian army, protection and IT sectors.

The final bundle of sanctions to this point got here into drive in June. For instance, it included an instrument towards the circumvention of sanctions which have already been imposed. There has lengthy been a far-reaching import ban on crude oil, coal, metal, gold and luxurious items, in addition to punitive measures towards banks and monetary establishments.