What are the UK sanctions against Russia? List of companies and individuals sanctioned - from Aeroflot to VTB

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Boris johnson has announced “the largest and most severe” economic sanctions Russia has ever seen - but what were they?

Western nations have announced further sanctions on Russia after the country underwent an overnight invasion of Ukraine.

Among those countries includes the UK, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson imposing new restrictions on banks, businesses and individuals.

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The sanctions have also been extended to Belarus for their part in assisting Russia with the invasion of Ukraine.

But what exactly was announced by Mr Johnson - and who do they affect?

Here’s everything you need to know about the UK’s sanctions on Russia.

What is a sanction?

A sanction is a restriction often put on the finances of another country, businesses or individuals.

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Sanctions are imposed as a way to apply pressure on a certain state to stop acting unlawfully or to dampen aggression.

The aim of it is to weaker the country’s economy or target specific politicians or individuals wealth.

Countries will only usually impose sanctions in extreme cases of aggression, with the tough measure usually one step down from military intervention.

What sanctions were imposed on Russia by the UK?

Updating MPs in the House of Commons, Mr Johnson said that the UK were imposing the “largest and most severe” economic sanctions that Russia has ever seen in response to the invasion of Ukraine.

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He spoke about the effect which the invasion has already had on the Russian stock markets and the value of the rouble, both have which have plummeted in the past 24 hours, adding that “we will continue on a remorseless mission to squeeze Russia from the global economy piece by piece, day by day and week by week.”

The sanctions included limits on exports to Russia, as well as freezing assets of major Russian banks and restrictions imposed on Russian individuals.

Foreign secretary Liz Truss has said that the Uk is implementing sanctions to “make sure the Russian economy is crippled so that it can no longer be able to fund its war machine”.

Which Russian banks are affected by the UK’s sanctions?

UK businesses, alongside US and EU businesses, will not be able to

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Name-checked by Mr Johnson in his address to parliament was VTB, Russia’s largest bank.

Designated banks will not be able to access Sterling currency meaning that they will have no access to UK market or be able to make payments through the UK.

This sanction has been imposed in connection with the US in what has been described as “by far the single biggest financial sanction in history”.

Russian banks will also be prevented from “accessing Sterling and clearing payments through the UK.”

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What is SWIFT and why has Russia been banned?

Western leader were under pressure to removed Russia from the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) system as part of sanctions.

SWIFT is a payment system which allows for rapid transfer of funds between borders.

The system is key to many nations to allow the easy transfer of funds for business transactions or other payments.

Banning Russia from SWIFT will effectively removed them from quick international business, which in turn will have a detrimental effect on the economy.

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Have oligarchs been affected by the UK’s sanctions?

The sanctions also targeted Russian individuals, including oligarchs within the UK.

15 associates of President Putin have now been sanctioned, with the Russian leader himself also under restrictions.

Some of those affected include foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, Kirill Shamalov, Gennady Timchenko and Alisher Usmanov.

These wealthy individuals will no longer be able to travel to the UK and any UK-based assets will be frozen.

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The Foreign Office said: “Individuals and companies whose assets are frozen will be unable to undertake any business in the UK or with UK nationals.”

They will also not be able to hold more than £50,000 in a UK bank account.

Despite pressure, the best-known Russian oligarch in the UK, Roman Abramovich, has not had any sanctions placed on him as of yet.

Which Russian companies have been affected by UK sanctions?

Russian companies will no longer be able to borrow from UK markets and in turn, they will not be able to raise finance in the UK.

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The five major Russian companies who are to be sanctioned are:

  • Rostec - Russia’s largest defence company and a major arms exporter
  • Uralvagonzavod - the world’s largest tank manufacturer who is closely tied with Rostec
  • Tactile Missile Corporation - a supplier of air and seaborne weapons who was instrumental in arming Russia during the recent military build up
  • United Aircraft Corporation - a holding company for all of Russia’s major aircraft manufacturers; the company was also instrumental in the Russian military build up prior to invasion
  • United Shipbuilding Corporation - the largest shipbuilding company in Russia

What is Aeroflot and has it been sanctioned?

Updating MPs on sanctions, Boris Johnson stated that Aeroflot will be banned from the UK.

Aeroflot is Russia’s largest airline and will now be banned from UK airspace.

Has Belarus also been sanctioned?

Belarus, a close ally of Russia who aided in the invasion of Ukraine, has been hit with sanctions by the UK.

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Foreign Secretary Liz Truss confirmed that four senior defence officials in President Alexander Lukashenko’s administration and two key military chiefs are among those who will be affected.

They will all have their UK-based assets frozen and be banned from entering the UK.

Ms Truss said: “We are inflicting economic pain on Putin and those closest to him.

“We will not rest until Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is restored.

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“The Lukashenko regime actively aids and abets Russia’s illegal invasion and will be made to feel the economic consequences for its support for Putin.

“There will be nowhere to hide. Nothing – and no one – is off the table.”

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