On Wednesday, representatives of the 27 European Union countries will meet in Brussels to discuss a new package of sanctions against Russia, which the head of the bloc’s executive said could cost 11 billion euros ($11.8 billion) in lost trade. The proposals must gain the unanimous backing of all EU member states in order to be implemented.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen stated that the sanctions are intended to weaken Russia’s ability to maintain its war machine, and that the current nine packages of sanctions have already caused the Russian economy to shrink. The tenth package would include restrictions on dual-use and electronic components used in Russian armed systems such as drones, missiles, and helicopters. Additionally, the package would target Iranian economic operators linked to the Revolutionary Guards for assisting Russia’s war.
Four more Russian banks, including Alfa-Bank, Tinkoff, and Rosbank, might be cut from global messaging system SWIFT, and rubber and asphalt would be added to the EU list of barred imports from Russia. The EU would also ban Russia Today’s Arabic service from its territory. Further bans on EU exports to Russia would cover electronic circuits and components, thermal cameras, radios, heavy vehicles, steel, and aluminum. There would also be additional restrictions on European joint ventures with Russia and Russian nationals sitting on boards in Europe.
EU nations are also looking at additional reporting obligations to better track Russian assets in Europe, as they seek ways to use those frozen under sanctions to finance rebuilding Ukraine from the war. The EU has so far located around 33.8 billion euros worth of Russian central bank assets on its territory.
EU top diplomat Josep Borrell also stated that EU countries had to supply more arms, more quickly to Ukraine, where the United States and NATO said Russia has started a new offensive.