Espreso. Global
OPINION

How Russian loopholes in evading sanctions are closed

28 March, 2023 Tuesday
18:51

This is a long process, but it significantly increases the effectiveness of sanctions

Prior to the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Russia was a significant participant, though not the only one, in world trade. In most markets, such as gas, oil, and metallurgy, which form a crucial system for the Russian Federation, its share in world exports was approximately 10%. However, it held a dominant position in the European gas market, accounting for over 40% of it until recently.

Considering Russia's size, it's impossible to eliminate its presence in world trade entirely. Therefore, it will continue to resist and devise various schemes and bypass options as long as resources are available.

On the other hand, Russia isn't substantial enough on a global scale to be "immediately needed". Thus, the sanctions imposed by Ukraine's allies are gradually encouraging the world to function without Russia. These steps must persist incessantly to maintain the trend:

1. The 11th round of EU sanctions against Russia will target the evasion of previously imposed restrictive measures against Moscow, according to Ursula von der Leyen, head of the European Commission. 

While Russia may not be essential on a global scale in the immediate sense of the word, the gradual imposition of sanctions by Ukraine's allies is teaching the world to function without it. The timing of this event is crucial, particularly since the measures outlined in the 10th round need to be strengthened.

Global Witness, a British NGO, has released a report indicating that Russian oil is being sold systematically at prices higher than the $60 "ceiling" established by the G7 nations in December 2022. Despite this, its stock price has remained below $50 for an extended period. However, hackers have been able to find loopholes through the use of various schemes such as the mixing of different types of oil and transportation by a "gray" tanker fleet.

It is now time to close the loopholes that have become apparent and uncover new ones. Although a lengthy process, it significantly enhances the effectiveness of sanctions.

2. The EU and NATO are devising strategies to circumvent Hungary's attempts to block aid to Ukraine and to impede anti-Russian actions.

Despite Hungary's reluctance, a meeting of the Ukraine-NATO Commission at the foreign ministers' level will soon take place in Brussels. The Alliance has found a procedural approach to prevent Budapest from utilizing the right of veto.

Earlier, in December, the EU was able to allocate EUR 18 billion in aid to Ukraine, effectively bypassing Hungary's objections.

Despite Hungary's reluctance, a meeting of the Ukraine-NATO Commission at the foreign ministers' level will soon take place in Brussels. The Alliance has found a procedural approach to prevent Budapest from utilizing the right of veto

As Hungary is reliant on EU funds and NATO protection, it cannot continue to blackmail these alliances indefinitely. In the meantime, the allies are severing the ties that bind Hungary to Russia. According to the Financial Times, Hungary has commenced negotiations with France to increase its participation in the expansion project of the Hungarian nuclear power plant Paks, which is currently predominantly managed by the Russian state company Rosatom. Given that France is among the opponents of the implementation of sanctions against Rosatom, its involvement in pushing Russia out of the European nuclear market is a strategic move. Notably, the French state-owned nuclear reactor manufacturer Framatome acts as a contractor for Rosatom in Hungary, and it must provide the power plant control systems together with the German company Siemens. Therefore, it is probable that the Russian mediator will be eventually pushed out.

3. According to a spokesperson for the Indian Air Force, plans for a significant supply of weapons from Russia this year have been canceled due to the Russian Federation's aggression in Ukraine. The planned supply likely included aircraft, components for them, and the S-400 air defense system.

The Wall Street Journal has reported that Russia's global arms export market share dropped from 22% to 16% between 2017 and 2022, with the aggression against Ukraine serving as a detrimental factor for Russian weapons sales.

The Wall Street Journal has reported that Russia's global arms export market share dropped from 22% to 16% between 2017 and 2022, with the aggression against Ukraine serving as a detrimental factor for Russian weapons sales

4. In lieu of the canceled Russian arms supply, the European Union leaders have approved the joint purchase of ammunition for Ukraine and have also expressed support for missile supplies, if necessary.

5. According to the conclusions adopted at the European Council meeting in Brussels, the European Union is committed to ensuring full accountability for war crimes and other serious crimes committed in connection with Russia's aggressive war against Ukraine. To this end, the EU intends to establish an appropriate mechanism for prosecuting the crime of aggression, which is a matter of concern for the entire international community.

The European Council welcomes the agreement on the establishment of a new international prosecution center for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, which will be associated with the Joint Investigative Group supported by Eurojust. The document also reaffirms the Council's support for the investigations conducted by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.

These mechanisms will not only prosecute Russian criminals but also create a legal basis for the confiscation of assets belonging to Russian public and private individuals in favor of Ukraine. 

Source

About the author. Rostyslav Pavlenko, Ukrainian politician, political scientist, lecturer. People's Deputy of Ukraine of the 9th convocation

The editors do not always share the opinions expressed by the blog authors.



 
EU
gas
oil
Read also:
  • News
2023, Saturday
9 December
12:39
UK intelligence explains why Russia attacks Snake Island with risk to crews, aircraft
12:15
Ukrainian army destroys 900 Russian soldiers, 11 vehicles, 6 tanks - General Staff
11:52
Russian army attacks Beryslav, killing one civilian, injuring another
11:28
Ukraine is deploying all reserves to hold Avdiivka: Russian fakes for December 8
11:03
Exclusive
Russia strengthens total control in temporarily occupied Nova Kakhovka - mayor
10:40
ISW reports active Russian attacks near Avdiivka
2023, Friday
8 December
22:00
Review
Victorious news on 653rd day of war: aid package from Germany, Ukraine and Sweden discuss supplying Gripen fighter jets
21:45
OPINION
Putin deceives Arabs from OPEC
21:29
Free navigation: International Maritime Organization to send mission to help Ukraine
21:10
Ukrainian forces repel 32 Russian attacks in Avdiivka sector, 20 in Marinka sector - General Staff
20:50
OPINION
First time leading Polish politician admits Ukrainian-Polish border blockade is national security issue
20:29
Exclusive
Ukraine receives German Luna NG UAV: Defense Express tells more about it
20:10
Ukrainian boxer Yarchevsky killed in war with Russia
19:51
Exclusive
Map of fighting in Kupyansk sector
Russia amasses troops near Synkivka - Ukrainian brigade on Kupyansk sector
19:30
Olympics 2024: Russians, Belarusians allowed to compete in neutral status
19:10
Exclusive
How many missiles can Russia use in one attack? Aviation expert names maximum number
18:50
UAVs, grenade launchers and ammunition: Germany hands over new aid package to Ukraine
18:30
Exclusive
map of fighting near Avdiivka
Russian forces are increasingly using 'meat assaults' in Avdiivka sector
18:10
Exclusive
Russia prepares mobilization after Putin's re-election - expert Stupak
17:50
Russia stops providing medical care to Ukrainians without its passports in Luhansk region
17:31
Ukrainian parliament adopts law on national minority rights
17:14
OPINION
What about US aid? Has everyone abandoned us? Are we all going to die?
16:55
Four EU trade unions call for boycott of Polish carriers due to Ukrainian border blockade
16:37
Potential impact of freezing war in Ukraine: Analysis by military expert Kovalenko
16:20
Review
Ukrainian counteroffensive: achievements and setbacks in summer-autumn campaign
16:02
German bank will provide over EUR 24 million to create energy-efficient housing for internally displaced Ukrainians
15:45
Scandalous and dangerous decision: Ukrainian MP comments on Poland’s investigation into Operation Vistula 
15:28
Russian shelling damages frontline thermal power plant
15:15
Putin announces his intention to run for president in 2024
15:02
Updated
Russia attacks Ukraine with cruise missiles, resulting in casualties: one person killed, 8 injured in Dnipropetrovsk region
14:33
Finland refuses to extradite Petrovsky, one of leaders in Russian Rusich Group, to Ukraine
14:16
OPINION
Without Kyiv's membership in NATO, civilized world will lose
13:58
Exclusive
Russia fears expansion of Ukrainian bridgehead on left bank of Kherson region - military expert Zgurets
13:41
Apache and Black Hawk: helicopters price and waiting time 
13:23
In Ukraine, almost 500 settlements without power due to weather, hostilities and technological failures
13:04
Exclusive
Destroys targets at distance up to 8 km: Zgurets tells about US VAMPIRE anti-missile system
12:48
Russia holds about 500 medics in captivity - Ukraine to OSCE
12:30
"British special forces fought near Bucha": Russian fakes compilation for December 7
12:12
Review
Russia uses new close assault strategy in Avdiivka sector. Serhiy Zgurets' Column
11:42
Gas pipeline catches fire in temporarily occupied Crimea
More news