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EU to impose bans on 11 Russian ships involved in sanctions violations

EU to impose bans on 11 Russian ships involved in sanctions violations EU to impose bans on 11 Russian ships (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

The European Union is poised to impose restrictions on 11 vessels that facilitate Russia's ability to prolong its war against Ukraine, citing Bloomberg.

The proposed measures, if approved by member states, would bar these vessels from accessing EU ports and anchorage zones, as well as complicate the logistics of their operations by prohibiting their use of European companies for a range of services.

Among the vessels targeted are four petrol tankers, two crude oil tankers, two gas carriers slated for use in the future Novatek project for liquefied natural gas transshipment in Kamchatka, and a cargo ship. Notably, one of these vessels, the Andromeda Star tanker, was involved in an accident in the Baltic Sea and was found to have invalid European insurance.

These proposals are part of the EU's efforts to curtail Moscow's ability to circumvent price restrictions on Russian oil by utilizing a shadow fleet and to restrict the activities of vessels involved in transporting goods that contribute revenue to the Russian military apparatus, especially in sanctioned sectors.

According to a draft document seen by Bloomberg, the ban would extend to insurance and technical assistance, ship supply services, crew change services, loading and unloading services, crane installation services, and tug services. European suppliers would also be prohibited from engaging in ship-to-ship transshipment, according to the draft.

Sanctions would also complicate fuel procurement for these vessels, but the EU measures appear to be less stringent than those imposed by the US Treasury on several of the same vessels.

As part of the same 14th sanctions package, the European Commission has also proposed to include several LNG projects and to ban the transshipment of Russian LNG from the EU to third countries.

European exporters will be urged to strengthen their comprehensive scrutiny of their trade practices, and they could face measures if they fail to prevent the circumvention of vital goods due to a lack of checks.

EU sanctions must be approved unanimously by the bloc's 27 member states, and the package may undergo changes before its finalization.

The European Commission has submitted to EU members a draft of 14 sanction packages against Russia. Specifically, a ban on the transshipment of Russian LNG in European ports is proposed, from where it subsequently departs worldwide. However, there is no mention of a ban on Russian liquefied natural gas in the EU.