EU launches new sanctions against Russia – Reuters News in France and abroad

New restrictions target Russia’s energy sector and restrict trade in luxury goods

The European Union announced a fourth round of anti-Russian sanctions on Tuesday. The new measures include bans on investments in the Russian energy sector and bans on the export of luxury goods and imports of iron and steel.

The new economic sanctions include a ban on all transactions with certain Russian state-owned companies and a ban on imports of various metals from Russia. EU agencies are also prohibited from providing credit ratings to Russian individuals or entities, and EU citizens are not allowed to make new investments in the Russian energy sector.

However, oil and gas imports to the EU remain unchanged. Europe is heavily dependent on Russia for its energy imports, and although leaders in Brussels plan to reduce this dependency, they have refrained from imposing import bans like the UK and the US have already done so.

The new sanctions also ban the export of luxury goods worth more than 300 euros ($328) to Russia, including champagne, handbags, diamonds and vehicles worth more than 50,000. euros ($54,730). An extensive list of prohibited goods published in the EU legal review also mentions luxury goods like purebred racehorses and works of art, as well as mundane purchases like cotton t-shirts and cigarettes.

Nine Russian entities – including the kerosene subsidiary of energy giant Rosneft and a number of Russian arms manufacturers and other military-industrial companies – were also sanctioned, along with 15 people, including billionaire Roman Abramovich. .

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The new sanctions follow three rounds of similar restrictions imposed on Russia by the EU in recent weeks. Previous sanctions targeted Russian lawmakers and businesspeople, the country’s financial sector and the media RT and Sputnik. EU airspace has also been closed to Russian flights since February.

The purpose of the sanctions, combined with similar measures imposed by the United States and the United Kingdom, is to increase the cost of living for Russians because of the conflict in Ukraine. International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva told CBS News on Sunday that international sanctions will have an effect ” strict “ impact on the Russian economy, leading to a deep recession later in the year.

However, Russian President Vladimir Putin insists the country can cope with such “economic warfare” thanks to its wealth of natural resources and vast reserves. In addition to halting some exports, including grain, Russia reacted to US sanctions on Tuesday by blacklisting US President Joe Biden and a number of his senior officials. The Russian Foreign Ministry said more US officials and media figures “who are Russophobic or contribute to incite hatred towards Russia” will be added to the list in the near future.

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EU launches new sanctions against Russia – Reuters News in France and abroad