“Our goal is to use an integrated approach that includes export controls that will apply over time and sanctions that will apply immediately,” Assistant US Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said.
LONDON, UK — The United States and its allies are planning new sanctions against more sectors of Russia’s economy that are critical to supporting its invasion of Ukraine, including supply chains, the secretary said. US Treasury Assistant Wally Adeyemo on Tuesday, March 29.
Adeyemo, speaking in London during a trip to Europe to consult with allies on toughening and applying sanctions to punish Russia, said the expanded efforts were aimed at undermining “the Kremlin’s ability to operate his war machine”.
“In addition to sanctioning companies in sectors that enable malign Kremlin activity, we also plan to take action to disrupt their critical supply chains,” Adeyemo said at an event at the Chatham House think tank.
“Our goal is to use an integrated approach that includes export controls that will bite over time and sanctions that will bite immediately,” he said, adding that they would also target alternative military suppliers used by Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has sent troops to Ukraine in what he calls a “special military operation” to demilitarize and “denazify” Ukraine.
Since the start of the invasion on February 24, Western allies have frozen the Russian central bank’s foreign currency holdings, barred major Russian banks and wealthy elites from dealing in hard currency, and imposed restrictions on exports of semi- advanced drivers and other technologies.
The sanctions deprived the Kremlin of resources and helped cripple the Russian economy. Adeyemo said they would stay in place as long as the invasion continued.
He attributed the success of the sanctions to a powerful multilateral effort and the strength of an international economic and financial system built by democratic countries at the end of World War II, which created institutions such as the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the forerunner to the World Trade Organization.
These institutions created international rules, norms and values that set the stage for decades of prosperity, but were rejected by Russia when it invaded, he said.
Adeyemo said he expected countries like China and India to remain part of the global financial system rather than seeing the Ukraine crisis as a moment of decoupling from the West.
“The system has adapted and molded to members who have come in to create huge reductions in poverty, and not just Western countries,” he said. “That’s why, I think, ultimately they will continue to be part of the system, because the benefits of the system far outweigh the risks.”
He said, however, that he was not open to those who did not respect the fundamental principles of territorial integrity and self-determination, including the Russian oligarchs targeted by the sanctions and those who might try to help them to hide their assets.
Adeyemo said the international system that gave rise to the sanctions needed to be strengthened, including by addressing food insecurity resulting from the conflict, which has disrupted grain shipments from Ukraine.
He added that the use of economic sanctions must be refined to preserve their effectiveness, including avoiding unilateral actions and ensuring that they are linked to clear political objectives and can be easily reversed when achieved.
He also said the international community should finalize the global minimum corporate tax agreement and continue to provide the resources needed to end the COVID-19 pandemic, with wider access to vaccines. – Rappler.com