The EU has published its eighth package of measures and the UK has published a number of new regulations to implement previously announced measures.
Split across four regulations, the EU’s eighth package:
- Introduces new export controls relating to Russia. In addition to existing export bans, it is now prohibited to sell, supply, transfer, or export: (i) firearms, their parts/components, and ammunition; (ii) listed goods used in the aviation sector; (iii) additional items which may contribute to Russia’s military, industrial and technological enhancement; and (iv) further goods that may contribute to industrial capacities. These restrictions also include bans on providing technical assistance, financial assistance, and other services relating to such items.
- Introduces further import restrictions. In particular, on: (i) iron and steel products (including when processed in third countries incorporating iron and steel products originating in Russia); and (ii) further goods that generate revenues for Russia.
- Prohibits the provision of further services. Banned services include architectural and engineering services, legal advisory services (i.e., the provision of legal advice in non-contentious matters, participation in commercial transactions, negotiations, and other dealings with third parties, and preparation, execution, and verification of legal documents), and IT consultancy services. These services must not be provided to the Government of Russia or legal persons, entities or bodies established in Russia. In addition, it is also now prohibited to hold posts in the governing bodies of listed state-owned entities.
- Widens shipping restrictions. The Russian Maritime Shipping Register is now a listed state-owned entity that is subject to a transaction ban. Further, vessels certified by the Russian Maritime Shipping Register will be subject to the existing port/lock ban from April 8, 2023.
- Implements the EU oil “price cap.” New provisions prohibit the transport of crude oil (CN 2709 00) and petroleum products (CN 7710) originating in Russia or exported from Russia unless the price per barrel of such products does not exceed the “price cap,” which will be determined by The Price Cap Coalition and included in Annex XXVIII to Regulation (EU) 833/2014.
- Prohibits the provision of crypto wallets. It is now prohibited to provide crypto-asset wallet, account or custody services to Russian nationals or individuals/entities in Russia for any amount (previously the prohibition on applied on amounts exceeding EUR 10,000.
- Designates new asset freeze targets. The targeted individuals and entities are those that are said to have been involved in the recent illegal referenda, as well as figures spreading propaganda, and individuals/entities associated with the defence and military sectors.
- Introduces circumvention sanctions. Individuals and entities involved in circumventing sanctions against Russia may now be designated for asset freezes in their own right.
- Extends restrictions to non-government-controlled areas. Existing restrictions in place in relation to the Donets and Luhansk oblasts now also cover non-government controlled areas of the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.
Meanwhile, the UK has published its 15th and 16th amending regulations to its Russian sanctions regime:
- Amendment (No. 15) Regulation
- Adds new goods to the existing G7 Dependency and Further Goods category, the export of which to or for use in Russia is now prohibited (e.g., relating to oil refining technology and manufacturing products).
- Inserts another new category of Russia’s Vulnerable Goods, the export of which to or for use in Russia is now prohibited (the list includes: wood products; tools and equipment; engines, motors, and generators; refrigeration equipment; machinery; and electrical components).
- Applies restrictions on importing or acquiring liquefied natural gas which originates from, or is located in, Russia.
- Expands restrictions on gold to now cover the import of processed gold or gold jewelry which originates in Russia (or was exported from Russia after October 29, 2022).
- Introduces amended lending restrictions. A new prohibited “category 5 loan” has been introduced—this is a loan or credit with maturity exceeding 30 days made to a person (other than an individual) that is connected with Russia (or a company owned by a person connected with Russia).
- Amendment (No. 16) Regulation
- Brings forward the implementation of the import ban on Russian oil and oil products to December 5, 2022 (from December 31, 2022).
- Introduces restrictions on the transport of Russian oil (or oil transported from Russia) and new penalty provisions conferring additional enforcement powers on OFSI:
- UK persons are prohibited from shipping oil and oil products which originate in or are consigned from Russia from a place in Russia to a third country or from one third country to another third country.
- UK persons are prohibited from directly or indirectly providing financial services or funds in relation to an arrangement to ship oil and oil products which originate in or are consigned from Russia from a place in Russia to a third country or from one third country to another third country.
- UK persons are prohibited from providing brokering services in relation to such arrangements.
- The restrictions apply:
- From the “first relevant day” (December 5, 2022) for oil and oil products of CN code 2709 (petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous materials, crude); and
- From the “second relevant day” (February 5, 2023) for oil and oil products of CN code 2710 (petroleum oils and oils obtained from bituminous materials, other than crude).
- There is an exemption for oil/products that (a) originate in a country that is not Russia; (b) are not owned by a person connected with Russia; and (c) are only being loaded in, departing from, or transiting through Russia.
- The UK government will issue a General Licence which will allow the above services to be provided so long as the oil is sold at or below the price cap, to be determined in conjunction with the G7.
- In addition to the above measures, the UK has continued to designate new individuals and entities for the purposes of asset freezes and travel bans.