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US, UK announce new sanctions on Russian metal exports

The US and Britain announce embargo on Russian-origin aluminum, copper, and nickel imports, largest export product after energy resources, to reduce Russia’s profits.
Aluminum factory in Russia. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.
US, UK announce new sanctions on Russian metal exports

The United States and Britain announced an embargo on imports of some metals originating in Russia to reduce Russia’s profits and make it “harder for it to wage war” in Ukraine.

According to the US Department of the Treasury on 12 April, the new measures prohibit the import of Russian-origin aluminum, copper, and nickel into the United States, as well as restrict the use of Russian-origin aluminum, copper, and nickel on global metal exchanges.

Metals are Russia’s largest export product after energy resources. According to UK estimates, Russia’s profits from metal exports have decreased from $25 billion to $15 billion since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. As stated in the announcement, the measures aim to further reduce this amount.

“Our new bans on key metals, in coordination with our partners in the United Kingdom, will continue to target the revenues Russia can use to pursue its brutal war against Ukraine,” said US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

The British government clarified that the London Metal Exchange (LME) and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) will no longer trade new aluminum, copper, and nickel produced in Russia.

“Depriving Putin of the means to wage his illegal war in Ukraine is best achieved when we act shoulder-to-shoulder with our allies,” UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt said.

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