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Ukraine can claim $280 billion in Russian assets - Former Deputy Minister of Justice

Ukraine can claim $280 billion in Russian assets - Former Deputy Minister of Justice Iryna Mudra (Photo: RBC-Ukraine, Vitalii Nosach)

Ukraine may claim up to $280 billion of Russian assets frozen in various countries around the world, Iryna Mudra, who until recently held the position of Deputy Minister of Justice of Ukraine, stated in a comment to RBC-Ukraine.

"In particular, unofficial information indicates €191 billion or $210 billion of this amount is located in European countries, and the United States, it ranges from $5 to $8 billion."

Moreover, Japan may hold a significant portion of Russian funds - approximately $34 billion (4.5 trillion yen).

"This amount is blocked by the Bank of Japan according to the publication of March 1, 2022, in the Nikkei, which specializes in business and finance," Mudra noted.

According to her, prior to the full-scale invasion, Russian assets in various countries were much larger, but Russia managed to withdraw a portion of the funds. "The amount decreased by $50-70 billion accordingly. These funds were withdrawn in advance, before the full-scale invasion," Mudra said.

On March 30, Iryna Mudra was recently appointed Deputy Head of the Office of the President, and in her new position, she will continue to deal with issues related to reparations and the transfer of frozen Russian assets to Ukraine (the interview was conducted before the change of position).

Use of frozen Russian assets

Recall that the lion's share of frozen Russian assets is held in Belgium in the Euroclear depository. The EU is not yet prepared to confiscate these assets.

During the summit on March 21, EU leaders discussed redirecting profits from frozen Russian assets to purchase weapons for Ukraine and reached a preliminary agreement.

As a result, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, stated that EU leaders have paved the way to use a portion of the income from frozen Russian assets to finance military equipment for Ukraine. "The proposal could generate €3bn (£2.6bn) this year and the first billion could be released to Ukraine by July," von der Leyen said.

According to Bloomberg, the United States supports a proposal to issue bonds worth $50 billion for Ukraine using frozen Russian assets.