The White House has unveiled measures to isolate Russia from the global financial, technological and commercial system.
The United States said it was imposing “tough” economic sanctions on Russia in response to President Vladimir Putin’s attack on Ukraine, aimed at crippling Russia’s economy, financial institutions and access to technology.
US President Joe Biden at the White House said Thursday: “Putin chose this war. And now he and his country will suffer the consequences.
Russia’s stock market fell to its lowest level in four and a half years on Thursday, and its currency, the ruble, hit a record high against the greenback.
Now, the even tougher measures are aimed at squeezing the Russian economy, stifling its growth, raising borrowing costs, raising inflation and intensifying capital outflows.
The Biden administration said in a statement Thursday afternoon that the sanctions target Russia’s 10 largest financial institutions and impose export controls that will more than halve Russian high-tech imports.
The measures include separating Russia’s largest bank from the US financial system, imposing sanctions on Russia’s second-largest bank and freezing all its assets affecting the US financial system.
Sanctions against major Russian financial entities include the imposition of “full blocking and correspondent and sweep account sanctions, as well as debt and equity restrictions, on institutions holding nearly 80% of assets of the Russian banking sector,” the White House said.
“The scale of Putin’s aggression and the threat it poses to the international order require a resolute response, and we will continue to impose significant costs if he does not change course,” the statement added. Biden administration in a statement.
The United States applauded Australia, Canada, the European Union, Japan and the United Kingdom for agreeing to take “equally strong” action against Russia.
Here is a list of US sanctions:
- Cut the connection the US financial system for Russia’s largest financial bank, Sberbank, comprising 25 subsidiaries, by imposing measures that cut off Sberbank’s access to transactions carried out in dollars. Sberbank owns almost a third of the assets of the Russian banking sector.
- Sanctions against Russia second largest financial institution, VTB Bank (VTB), and its subsidiaries, freezing assets affecting the US financial system and prohibiting US persons from doing business with them. Heavily exposed to US and Western financial systems, VTB owns nearly a fifth of Russian banking sector assets.
- Similar sanctions of total blocking on Bank Otkritie, Sovcombank OJSC and Novikombank and dozens of its subsidiaries, with measures freezing the assets of these institutions affecting the American financial system and also prohibiting Americans from doing business with them.
- New restrictions on debt and equity on 13 critical Russian financial entities, including restrictions on all transactions, the provision of financing and other operations on new debts with a maturity of more than 14 days and new capital issued by 13 Russian public companies. Sberbank, AlfaBank, Moscow Credit Bank, Gazprombank, Russian Agricultural Bank, Gazprom, Gazprom Neft, Transneft, Rostelecom, RusHydro, Alrosa, Sovcomflot and Russian Railways are on the list. With assets estimated at around $1.4 trillion, these entities will not be able to raise funds through the US market.
- Additional blocking sanctions against Russian elites and their family members and individuals “who have enriched themselves at the expense of the Russian state”. The leaders of Russia’s largest financial institutions and those providing the resources needed to support the invasion of Ukraine are also targeted.
- Two dozen Belarusian individuals and entities were also sanctioned for supporting the attack on Ukraine. Two major Belarusian state-owned banks, nine defense companies and seven individuals are among those affected.
- Russian Ministry of Army and Defense prohibits the purchase of nearly all US items and items produced in foreign countries using certain US-origin software, technology, or equipment.
- Defence, aviation and maritime technologies subject to Russia-wide restrictions aimed at stifling Moscow’s import of tech products. It also includes a Russia-wide refusal to export certain technologies. US sanctions will also impose Russia-wide restrictions on certain US technologies produced in other countries, including semiconductors, encryption security, lasers, sensors, navigation, avionics and maritime technology.
- License exemptions for countries that adopt export restrictions to Russia will be implemented, eliminating US licensing requirements for items produced in their country. The EU, Australia, Japan, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom have already communicated their plans for parallel actions.