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G7 countries to hold frozen Russian assets until Moscow pays reparations to Ukraine

by Dinara Khalilova October 13, 2023 11:33 AM 2 min read
President Volodymyr Zelensky poses for a photo with the G7 leaders during the group's summit in Hiroshima, Japan, on May 21, 2023. (President's Office)
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The Group of Seven (G7) nations pledged on Oct. 12 that Russian assets held in their jurisdictions, so far estimated at around $280 billion, will remain frozen until Moscow pays war reparations to Ukraine.

"We will continue our efforts to ensure that Russia pays for the long-term reconstruction of Ukraine," reads the statement of the G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors. "We will also explore all possible avenues to aid Ukraine, consistent with our respective legal systems and international law."

The group also pledged to continue enforcing sanctions to undermine Russia's capacity to wage its brutal war against Ukraine and countering attempts to circumvent those sanctions.

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"We will continue to strengthen coordination in monitoring cross-border transactions between Russia and other countries, take further action directed at the Russian financial sector as necessary, and closely monitor the effectiveness of the price caps on Russian crude oil and petroleum products."

The G7 statement comes amid ongoing discussions in the U.S. and the European Union on developing legal procedures needed to send frozen Russian assets to Ukraine to help fund the country's recovery.

On Oct. 12, the Estonian government approved a draft law that, if passed by parliament, would allow immobilized Russian assets to be transferred to Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Belgium has created a 1.7 billion euro ($1.8 billion) fund for Ukraine financed by tax revenue from interest on such assets.

Tetiana Khutor: Are legal constraints an excuse for dragging feet on mobilizing Russian assets?
No nation can single-handedly cover all of Ukraine’s reconstruction needs, and nor should it be expected to, considering the existence of frozen Russian assets worth billions worldwide. These funds will serve as the primary source for Ukraine’s recovery. To better grasp the situation, it is worth e…
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