The European Union plans to sanction Russia’s biggest lender, Sberbank, and other Russian financial firms in its next round of restrictions, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen has told a German newspaper.
“We are taking a closer look at the banking sector, in particular Sberbank, which represents 37% of the Russian banking sector,” von der Leyen told Bild am Sonntag when asked about the upcoming sixth round of sanctions.
The United States had imposed “tough sanctions” on Sberbank and another Russian lender, Alfa Bank, earlier in April. The UK also sanctioned Sberbank and pledged to end all Russian coal and oil imports by the end of 2022, the BBC reported.
But the EU had, until now, spared Sberbank and another big Russian lender, Gazprombank, because they were the main channels for its payments for Russian oil and gas.
In its fifth round of sanctions, the EU announced a number of restrictions, including a “total ban on transactions” against four banks representing 23% of the Russian banking sector.
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