EU approves new sanctions on Russia in energy, steel and defense sectors

The European Union today formally approved a new barrage of sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, which includes bans on investment in the Russian energy sector, exports of luxury goods and imports of Russian steel products.

The sanctions, which take effect after publication in the EU’s official gazette later on Tuesday, also freeze the assets of more business leaders who support the Russian state, including Chelsea football club owner Roman Abramovich.

The European Commission said in a statement on Tuesday that the sanctions include “a comprehensive ban on new investments in the Russian energy sector”.

The move will hit major Russian oil companies Rosneft, Transneft and Gazprom Neft, but EU members will still be able to buy oil and gas from them, an EU source told Reuters.

There will also be a total ban on transactions with some Russian state-owned companies linked to the Kremlin’s military-industrial complex, the EU Executive said.

The bloc reached a preliminary agreement on the new sanctions on Monday, and no objections were raised before the agreed deadline.

Map Russia invades Ukraine - 26.02.2022 - Arte UOL - Arte UOL
Image: UOL Art

The ban on Russian steel imports is estimated to affect 3.3 billion euros ($3.6 billion) in products, according to the Commission.

EU companies will also not be able to export luxury goods worth more than €300, including jewelry. Exports of cars costing more than €50,000 will also be banned, EU sources said.

The package also prohibits EU credit rating agencies from issuing ratings to Russia and Russian companies.

The latest sanctions follow three rounds of punitive measures that included freezing Russian central bank assets and delisting some Russian and Belarusian banks from the SWIFT banking system.

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