The United Kingdom, the United States, Canada and Japan will ban Russian gold imports in new sanctions imposed in response to the invasion of Ukraine, Downing announced on Sunday Street on the first day of a G7 summit.
“These measures will directly hit the Russian oligarchs and attack the heart of Putin's war machine,” said the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is meeting the leaders of the major industrialized powers in Germany for three days.
“Putin is squandering his dwindling resources on this useless and barbaric war. He feeds his ego at the expense of the Ukrainian and Russian people,” he added, quoted in a statement.
“We must dry up funding for the Putin regime. This is what we are doing with our allies”.
Russia is a major gold-producing country whose exports accounted for nearly 15 billion euros in 2021, according to Downing Street.
Banning gold from the London markets, an important financial center for commodity trading, will therefore have “a huge impact on Putin's ability to raise funds”, insisted the British government.
This will particularly hit Russian elites who may have been buying gold “in an attempt to circumvent Western sanctions,” he added.
These measures, however, only affect gold newly mined in Russia and not one acquired before this embargo was put in place.
The UK has imposed some of the harshest sanctions within the Western camp against Russia since the start of the invasion of Ukraine four months ago, targeting the financial sector, oil, dozens of oligarchs, totaling more than 100 entities and 1,000 people.
G7 leaders ( France, United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan) meet from Sunday in southern Germany for t three days of summit, followed by a meeting of NATO countries in Madrid.