The package was formally adopted on Friday, after EU leaders, including Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, reached agreement on the restrictive measures at a summit in Brussels the previous day, news outlets reported.
The bloc’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Friday, as cited by Polish state news agency PAP: “After food and hunger, Putin is now weaponising the winter, by deliberately depriving millions of Ukrainians of water, electricity and heating. The European Union is responding to this latest escalation and war crime with our 9th package of hard-hitting sanctions.”
Dual-use goods, key chemicals
The EU moved to impose “new export controls and restrictions on dual-use goods and technology as well as goods and technology that can contribute to the technological enhancement of Russia’s defence and security sector by significantly expanding the list of entities connected to Russia’s military and industrial complex by additional 168 entities targeted by sectoral measures,” it said in a statement.
These measures “will ensure that key chemicals, nerve agents, night-vision and radio-navigation equipment, electronics and IT components that could be used by the Russian war machine cannot be freely traded,” the statement added.
Moreover, “to avoid circumvention, some Russian-controlled entities based in illegally annexed Crimea or Sevastopol are also included in the list,” it was announced.
Ban on exports of drone engines to Russia
The EU also said it would “expand the export ban on aviation and the space industry related goods and technology to include aircraft engines and their parts.”
It added that “this prohibition will apply to both manned and unmanned aircraft, meaning that from now on there will be a ban on the direct exports of drone engines to Russia and any third country that could supply drones to Russia.”
EU officials stressed that “none of the measures adopted in view of Russia’s actions destabilising the situation in Ukraine target in any way the trade in agricultural and food products, including wheat and fertilisers, between third countries and Russia.”
They added: “However, in view of the Union’s determined stance to avoid and combat food insecurity around the world, and in order to avoid disruptions in the payment channels for agricultural products, it was decided to introduce a new derogation allowing to unfreeze assets of, and to make funds and economic resources available to, certain individuals who held a significant role in international trade in agricultural and food products, including wheat and fertilisers, prior to their listing.”
Banks, media outlets, energy
The EU will also “impose an asset freeze against two additional Russian banks and add the Russian Regional Development Bank to the list of Russian State-owned or controlled entities that are subject to a full transaction ban,” Friday’s statement said.
Moreover, “in order to address the Russian Federation's systematic, international campaign of disinformation and information manipulation intended to destabilise its neighbouring countries, the EU and its member states, the Council initiated the process for suspending the broadcasting licences of four additional media outlets: NTV/NTV Mir, Rossiya 1, REN TV and Pervyi Kanal,” reporters were told.
The EU explained that “these outlets are under the permanent direct or indirect control of the leadership of the Russian Federation and have been used by the latter for its continuous and concerted disinformation and war propaganda actions, which legitimise Russia’s aggression and undermine support for Ukraine.”
At the same time, officials noted that “in line with the Charter of Fundamental Rights, these measures will not prevent those media outlets and their staff from carrying out activities in the EU other than broadcasting, e.g. research and interviews.”
Ban on investment in Russian mining sector
Further, the bloc moved to “expand the prohibition targeting new investments in the Russian energy sector by additionally prohibiting new investments in the Russian mining sector, with the exception of mining and quarrying activities involving certain critical raw materials,” the statement said.
Moreover, “as of today EU nationals will be forbidden from holding any posts on the governing bodies of all Russian state-owned or controlled legal persons, entities or bodies located in Russia,” the EU announced.
Officials also said that “in addition to economic sanctions, the Council decided to adopt a comprehensive package of individual measures both in number and content with a very significant number of additional individuals and entities.”
Friday was day 296 of Russia’s war on Ukraine.
Source: PAP, consilium.europa.eu
Click on the audio player above for a report by Radio Poland's Michał Owczarek.