Eighth package of EU economic sanctions against Russia

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On 6 October 2022, the Council of the European Union (the “Council”) adopted its eighth package of restrictive measures against Russia, which supplement those taken up until 21 July 2022 (discussed in previous newsflashes).

The Council adopted four regulations:

Restrictive measures targeting non-government-controlled areas of Ukraine

The restrictive measures under Regulation (EU) No 2022/263 targeting the non-government-controlled areas of Ukraine in Donetsk and Luhansk now also extend to the areas of Zaporijjia and Kherson. Various restrictions now affect trade and the provision of services to and from these areas.

Asset freeze measures against individuals and entities

A total of 30 individuals and 7 entities have been added to the list under Regulation (EU) No 269/2014, including Russian individuals who organised and facilitated the sham referenda in the four occupied areas of Ukraine.

The Council also introduced a new criterion for the listing of natural or legal persons, allowing those who facilitate the circumvention of sanctions to be listed and targeted by asset freeze measures.

Restrictions on the transport of crude oil or petroleum products

It will be prohibited to transport certain crude oil and petroleum products to third countries if they originate in, or were exported from, Russia. This transport ban is conditional on the Council introducing a price cap. Products purchased at a price lower than the cap will not fall under the transport prohibition.

The Council also introduced an exemption permitting the provision of technical assistance, brokering services or financing or financial assistance (including insurance services) related to the transport of such products purchased under a certain price. Other exemptions for the provision of these services have also been introduced.

Additional restrictive measures on trade

The Council adopted new restrictive measures targeting the trade of certain goods, including:

For these additional prohibitions, several wind-down periods have been provided for, as well as certain possibilities to request an authorisation from the competent authorities.

Prohibition to transact with certain Russian State-owned enterprises

The Council extended the existing prohibition to directly or indirectly engage in any transaction with certain Russian State-owned enterprises by including a ban on holding any post in the governing bodies of these entities. The Russian Maritime Register of Shipping has been added to the list of such entities, depriving it of the provision of any sort of economically valuable benefit.

Bans on the provision of services

The Council has removed the threshold of EUR 10,000 under which it was permitted to provide crypto-asset wallet, account or custody services to Russian persons and residents. The provision of these services is now entirely prohibited regardless of the total value of the crypto assets.

The prohibition to provide services to the Russian government or any entity established in Russia is now also extended to the provision of architectural, engineering, IT consultancy or legal services. However, various exemptions have been introduced under which the provision of such services is still permissible. The scope of the prohibition therefore remains limited, and may require a case-by-case analysis.

Our expertise

Contact our experts Philippe-Emmanuel Partsch, Miriam Postiglione and Björn ten Seldam  in the EU Financial & Competition Law practice for assistance understanding these measures and how they could potentially impact your activities.

This communication, which we believe may be of interest to our clients and friends of Arendt, is for general information only. It is not a full analysis of the matters presented and should not be relied upon as legal advice.

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Luxembourg Newsflash – Eighth package of EU economic sanctions against Russia

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