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Diamonds and more: UK announces new sanctions against Russia

Diamonds and more: UK announces new sanctions against Russia Photo: UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron (Getty Images)

On December 14, the United Kingdom government presented a law that outlines further sanctions on goods and technologies that assist Russia in financing the war against Ukraine, according to the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

"Following Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, the UK and its allies introduced the most severe sanctions ever imposed on a major economy. Imports to the UK from Russia fell by 94% in the year following the invasion, while exports plunged by 74%," the statement says.

The new package of sanctions aims to prohibit the export of a range of goods carrying the risk of military or industrial use, as well as the latest items found on the battlefield, including machine parts and electronics.

"Given the low levels of UK-Russia trade, these sanctions will ensure we are able to continue depriving Russia of products it could use in its war," the Foreign Office adds.

The UK clarified that after these measures, only low-risk exports, humanitarian, food, and medical exports would remain.

What else falls under sanctions

Additional sanctions include targeting products generating income for funding the Russian military machine.

This includes a ban on the import of certain Russian metals, as announced by G7 leaders in May. Additionally, the UK government is introducing a separate law banning the import of diamonds from Russia and plans to impose a ban on auxiliary services related to metals when it can be done jointly with international partners.

UK will support businesses leaving Russian market

The law also includes a range of financial measures aimed at supporting businesses that have decided to leave the Russian market. It specifies and expands the scope of existing sanctions regarding correspondent relations.

Changes will also introduce new reporting obligations to ensure greater transparency of assets in the UK and improve compliance with the existing sanctions regime. The reporting requirement for assets of designated individuals comes into effect on December 26.

UK's sanctions against Russia

"Based on 2021 trade flows, this package contains new sanctions on £70 million of potential UK exports to Russia and £67 million of imports, plus tightened sanctions on £662 million of exports that are already subject to restrictions," concludes the announcement.

The UK has been implementing sanctions against Russia, such as sanctions against a UAE company using tankers for transporting oil linked to Russia, and, jointly with the US, imposing sanctions against individuals associated with the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB).

Recently, the UK announced the creation of a new unit to tackle companies evading sanctions against Russia.