The EU Council approved the seventh sanctions package against Russia on Thursday, which, among other measures, introduces an import ban on Russian gold, including goldsmiths’ products, and tightens the export control of certain high-tech goods.
The package expands the list of controlled products that can contribute to the development of Russia’s military or defense and security sectors, thereby strengthening export controls on dual-use and advanced technology.
“The EU has taken another important step to weaken Russia’s ability to finance its war against Ukraine,” said EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell.
According to the Council’s press release, one of the goals of the newly adopted package is to tighten the existing economic sanctions and make their implementation more effective. In addition to the economic sanctions, the Council decided to add additional individuals and entities to its sanctions list and reporting obligations to make it easier to freeze their assets in the EU.
Speaking about the fact that the latest sanctions package contains no new elements related to natural gas or oil imports from Russia, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said, referring to the reality of existing gas reserves and pipelines within reach of Europe:
“Hungary has long been stressing that gas supplies are a matter of physical reality not ideology (…) It seems that not even Western Europe can rewrite physical fundamentals.”