BRUSSELS, Belgium (UPI) — The European Union (EU) on Tuesday adopted its fourth package of punitive measures targeting Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
The sanctions, which the 27-member bloc approved late Monday, deny Russia “most favored nation” status, revoking benefits that it enjoys as a member of the World Trade Organization as well as the privilege treatment its companies receive in the EU market.
The package also prohibits the importation of Russian steel, which the EU says will hit Moscow with a $3.6 billion revenue loss; a full prohibition on any transactions with certain Russian state-owned enterprises, specifically those involved in the Kremlin’s military-industrial complex; and a wide-reaching ban on new investment in the Russian energy sector.
It also bans the export of luxury European goods, such as cars and jewelry, in an effort to target Russia’s elite as well as further adding more oligarchs and business elites linked to the Kremlin and businesses active in the military to the EU’s growing list of sanctioned persons and entities.
The list already includes more than 860 individuals and 53 entities.
“These sanctions will further contribute to ramping up economic pressure on the Kremlin and cripple its ability to finance ints invasion of Ukraine,” the European Commission said in a statement, adding that they were done in conjunction with international partners, including the United States.
Last week, European Commission President Ursula von dey Leyen said the sanctions will also suspend Russia’s membership rights from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
“We will ensure that Russia cannot obtain financing, loans or any other benefits from these institutions,” she said. “Because Russia cannot grossly violate international law and, at the same time, expect to benefit from the privileges of being part of the international economic order.”
The EU has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine, which is fighting against a Russian invasion that was launched by President Vladimir Putin on Feb. 24.
Since the invasion, democratic nations have repeatedly hit Moscow with sanctions in an effort to isolate the nation and to cripple its economy.
The International Monetary Fund said Monday that the effort has caused Russia to slide into a deep recession, though the impact on its economy will have a spillover effect to those that are integrated with it.
Reporting by Darryl Coote
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