EU announces fourth wave of Russian sanctions

EU announces fourth wave of Russian sanctions
By Dominic Culverwell in Berlin March 16, 2022

The European Union has announced the fourth package of Russian sanctions on March 15 in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

In the latest wave of sanctions, designed to “further contribute to ramping up economic pressure on the Kremlin and cripple its ability to finance its invasion of Ukraine”, the EU in co-ordination with its partners have agreed the following: 

  • A full prohibition of any transactions with certain Russian State-owned enterprises across different sectors the Kremlin's military-industrial complex.
  • An EU import ban on steel products, amounting to approximately €3.3bn in lost export revenue for Russia. Increased import quotas will be distributed to other third countries to compensate.
  • A far-reaching ban on new investment across the Russian energy sector, with limited exceptions for civil nuclear energy and the transport of certain energy products back to the EU.
  • An EU export ban on luxury goods (e.g. luxury cars, jewellery, etc.) to directly hit Russian elites. This entails an export ban on luxury goods worth more than €300 and cars costing more than €50,000.
  • The list of sanctioned persons and entities has been further extended to include more oligarchs and business elites linked to the Kremlin, as well as companies active in military and defence areas, which are logistically and materially supporting the invasion. Individuals involved in disinformation campaigns are also included. 
  • A ban on the rating of Russia and Russian companies by EU credit rating agencies and the provision of rating services to Russian clients, which would result in them losing even further access to the EU's financial markets.

Moreover, together with other World Trade Organisation (WTO) members, the EU will “deny Russian products and services most-favoured nation treatment in EU markets”, which will “suspend the significant benefits that Russia enjoys as a WTO member”.

“This fourth package of sanctions is another major blow to the economic and logistic base upon which Russia relies on to carry out the invasion of Ukraine. The aim of the sanctions is that President Putin stops this inhuman and senseless war,” said Josep Borrell, the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

Previous sanctions targeted the Russian banking sector, air travel, social media and specific oligarchs, including six of Russia's most prominent oligarchs with close ties to the Kremlin and President Vladimir Putin. 

bne IntelliNews published a guide to the sanctions on Russia last month.