Sanctions on Russia: Deception begins in Europe

Sanctions on Russia: Deception begins in Europe
This article was originally published on English

Control of preventing Russia from obtaining EU-produced technology used in military equipment must start at the national level, according to EU sanctions implementation envoy David O’Sullivan.

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“I stress this to our member states and the countries I visit: the fight against tax evasion starts from within,” O’Sullivan said in an exclusive interview with Euronews.

Responsibilities of European companies

Since the invasion of Ukraine, the European Union has imposed eleven sanctions packages on Moscow in an attempt to complicate the supply of the Russian arms industry. but Many products The European ones, which contain components used in the manufacture of drones, missiles and artillery shells, are re-exported through the countries of the former Soviet Union.

O’Sullivan has been tasked with visiting third countries to urge them to limit Russia’s access to so-called “dual-use” goods, but says the EU must also look inward.

“These products are European. They are manufactured here and our companies, perhaps unknowingly, send them somewhere and from there they reach Russia. Member states are working hard to talk to European companies, investigate trade flows and check whether there are companies still selling products that may expire.” “It’s the same in Russia.”

According to O’Sullivan, EU countries should encourage their companies to conduct the necessary business checks and identify suspicious individuals. “Is this a newly created company or is it well-experienced in purchasing these products, perhaps from elsewhere? These are the questions companies need to ask themselves.”

Fight avoidance

O’Sullivan acknowledges that there will always be a certain degree of circumvention, given the gains that come from it, but he is determined to minimize it and is confident that his attempts are working, making it “far more difficult, slower and more expensive” for Russia. Obtaining the products the defense industry needs.

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In fact, the European Union, in cooperation with Ukraine, has drawn up a list of people 45 products in high demand for the Russian military campaign. These are components widely used in everyday devices such as semiconductors, integrated circuits, fiber-optic readers, and memory cards.

“Russia is struggling to get the technology it needs, and is now turning to Iran or North Korea. The Russians are having to use old weapons and use old tanks to keep their armed forces equipped.”

The expert also believes that the restrictive measures impose increasing damage on Russia, which has “less than 400 billion euros to spend” and The deficit is about 3%. Despite the growth of the Russian economy 30% of public spending It aims to expand the military, with inevitable repercussions for healthcare, research, education and other key sectors.

“I think it’s more of a slow hole than an explosion. But this has a very strong impact on the Russian economy and the Russian army: I think that sooner or later it will become very difficult for Russia to continue this war effort.”

The “majority” of third countries cooperate

Third countries such as Türkiye China has been targeted by the European Union, which accuses it of facilitating supplies of dual-use goods to Russia.

According to senior EU officials, while overall exports from China to Russia of so-called high-priority frontline products have declined, dual-use goods remain a concern.

According to O’Sullivan, “most” countries that do not implement direct sanctions against Russia “do not want to feed the Russian military machine” and are taking steps to prevent re-exports.

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“Most of them have been very responsive when they announced that they do not want to get involved in this trade. They do not want to damage their reputation by being a country that is seen as a conduit for gimmicks, because that will make companies think twice before investing.”

O’Sullivan also stated that The ceiling imposed by the European Union on Russian oil prices It has a positive impact, while we realize that countries like India continue to buy it and resell it to European countries. “The main goal is to make sure that Russian revenues are significantly reduced while oil prices are capped. I think there is a lot of evidence that this is happening.”

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