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Foreign trade: Habeck wants to make circumventing sanctions against Russia more difficult

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Since the attack on Ukraine, Russia has been subject to far-reaching trade sanctions. However, the Federal Ministry of Economics notes that these are often circumvented. That should change now.

The Federal Ministry of Economics wants to make it more difficult to circumvent the economic sanctions against Russia. Foreign trade data indicate that goods subject to EU sanctions are exported “to a considerable extent” from the EU and thus also from Germany to certain third countries and from there to Russia, according to a paper from the house of department head Robert Habeck (Greens ), which was available to the German Press Agency. RTL and n-tv had previously reported about it.

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“We must work together to oppose these circumvention activities more effectively than before, at national and EU level.” This should be the focus of an eleventh package of sanctions. The ministry will do this in close coordination with the other departments of the federal government.

Ministry wants support from as many states as possible

Specifically, the ministry wants to make companies more responsible. Exports to certain third countries should only be possible if transparent “end-use declarations” are submitted as part of the export declaration. “This applies to all sanctioned goods that are of importance to the Russian war machine. We are committed to this at EU level and are adapting the national regulations,” it says. Deliberate misrepresentation should in future be a criminal offense throughout Europe.

In addition, the ministry wants to gain the support of as many states as possible in order to increase the effectiveness of the sanctions. To this end, diplomatic efforts should be stepped up with the new EU sanctions coordinator and international partners. The abolition of tariff relief could give incentives to cooperate to countries that have not cooperated so far.

“Exclude certain companies from third countries”

The evasion of sanctions should also be punished more severely, it is said. In Brussels, for example, they are working to “exclude certain companies from third countries from receiving sanctioned goods”. In addition, the federal government wants to promote indications of sanctions violations more. To this end, the EU sector sanctions are supplemented with an information disclosure obligation that is aimed at everyone. Anyone who has “information relevant to sanctions” must report it to the authorities.

Since Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine began almost a year ago, the EU has launched nine sanctions packages against Russia. The tenth is in the final deliberations. According to the Federal Ministry of Economics, the sanctions were having an effect. “Particularly in view of the suffering of the Ukrainian population, we must continue to keep up the sanctions pressure.”

Source: Stern

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