Acuant Compliance Sanctions Update 3.21.22: The Russia-Ukraine Crisis
March 22, 2022
As the attack on Ukraine continues, additional sanctions have been announced by the United States, European Union and United Kingdom, to name a few. For previously imposed sanctions, read our introductory sanctions blog and our 3.7.22 sanctions update. Continue reading to learn about some of the recently imposed sanctions.
Current Snapshot of Sanctions as of 3.21.2022
United States: as part of continued efforts to weaken the Russian economy, President Biden announced the ban of the importation of Russian oil on March 8th. Although the United States does not solely depend on Russian oil, this recent ban has contributed to the already skyrocketing gas prices across the country.
On March 11th, President Biden announced the plan to revoke Russia’s ‘most-favored nation’ trade status as part of a joint effort with the other G7 nations. The removal of this type of status that ensures equal treatment for trading partners means that Russia is likely to face higher tariffs on imports. This means that goods such as vodka, seafood and diamonds will all face higher tariffs.
Additional sanctions have also been imposed on more Russian elites and their families and the administration is planning to ban the exportation of luxury items from the US to Russia; these items include but are not limited to high-end apparel, vehicles, alcohol and jewelry.
United Kingdom: on March 15th, the UK announced new sanctions against Russia. These sanctions include banning exports of high-end luxury goods from the UK to Russia. Additionally, many luxury fashion brands such as Chanel, Gucci and Prada, to name a few, have currently suspended their operations in Russia.
The UK announced new sanctions on hundreds more Russian and Belarusian individuals, including oligarchs, allies of Putin and their families, freezing assets in the UK and imposing travel bans. The ‘most-favored nation’ tariffs for hundreds of types of exports have been revoked for both Russia and Belarus. These export bans will include art, luxury vehicles and high-end fashion. The UK has also banned Russian ships from entering UK waters.
European Union: the EU has continued issuing sanctions against Russia. As of March 15th, the EU has issued new sanctions against Russian oligarchs, issued a broad ban on investment in the energy sector and restricted the exports of luxury goods and cutting-edge technology into Russia. A ban on importing finished steel from Russia into the EU has also been imposed. The bloc has announced that Russia and Russian companies will no longer be rated by EU credit-rating firms, but acknowledges the effectiveness of the ban will require US cooperation.
Because the EU highly depends on Russia for its oil and natural gas (far more than the US does), there has been much debate over whether to impose an oil ban on Russia—plans have already been made by the EU to decrease use of Russia’s natural gas by over sixty percent. However, it is understood that EU leaders will be convening this week to discuss the possibility of joining the US in the embargo on Russian oil, but with countries such as Germany, Italy and Hungary currently highly dependent on Russian oil and/or gas, any definitive action will likely take time to actually implement.
With new sanctions continuing to be introduced and definitions of noncompliance changing overnight, companies must be both proactive and responsive in order to avoid being party to financial crime—sanctions screening in real time will be essential for ensuring AML and regulatory compliance.
Learn more about how Acuant Compliance helps your business ensure AML compliance by staying up to date with evolving regulations.