On 13 April 2022, Switzerland’s Federal Council decided to adopt stiffer sanctions against Russia and Belarus.
The new sanctions cover measures in the areas of trade, finance and transport and include bans on the import of coal, wood, cement, seafood and vodka, products that serve as important sources of revenue for Russia. Exports of kerosene, industrial robots, certain chemicals and other goods that could contribute to strengthening Russia’s industrial capacity were also banned.
Russian companies are also excluded from public procurement and financial support for Russian public institutions is banned.
In addition, the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER) imposed financial sanctions and travel restrictions on a further 200 individuals from the fields of politics, industry, communications/propaganda and the armed forces, as well as key oligarchs and their family members. Two of President Putin’s daughters are among the individuals newly sanctioned. Switzerland’s list of sanctions now fully mirrors that of the EU, said the government in a press release.
The new sanctions are in line with additional sanctions adopted against the two nations by the EU on 8 April 2022 following reports of atrocities in Bucha.
The EU also imposed a ban on Russian and Belarusian road transport within the EU, and a ban on access to EU ports for Russian vessels. Switzerland refrained from this ban deeming it unnecessary because of its geographic location.
According to Guy Parmelin, the minister heading EAER, the latest batch of sanctions is likely to have minimal overall impact on Switzerland’s economy.