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Widened US sanctions against Russia to target semiconductor flow, Bloomberg reports

by Chris York and The Kyiv Independent news desk June 12, 2024 5:03 PM 2 min read
Russian law enforcement guard the Red Square near the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, on June 24, 2023. (Contributor/Getty Images)
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The U.S. will on June 12 announce a widening of sanctions against Russia aimed at cutting off the supply of semiconductors to Moscow's war industry, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the move.

According to the news outlet, Moscow is still able to obtain U.S.-branded versions of the technology from third-party sellers in countries including China, which it then uses in the manufacture of weapons such as the missiles that regularly target Ukraine.

Existing export controls and restrictions are to be widened to include the products of U.S. semiconductor companies even if they are not made domestically.

Speaking on June 11 in comments reported by Reuters, White House spokesman John Kirby said Washington will be imposing further export controls that would be "impactful" and target entities and networks helping Russia to fight its war in Ukraine.

"We're going to continue to drive up costs for the Russian war machine," Kirby said.

Western countries have imposed extensive economic restrictions against Moscow over its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, seeking to curb its state revenue and prevent it from obtaining key technologies needed for the war effort.

Russia has sought to dodge these sanctions via various third-party entities in China, Central Asia, Turkey, or the United Arab Emirates.

The Russian central bank's SPFS system, established in 2014, became an important tool for these transactions after Russia was disconnected from SWIFT in 2022.

Kyiv's partners have recently focused their efforts on banks suspected of facilitating these transactions, which led to several lenders to tighten curbs and subsequently to a drop in Russian imports.

U.S. Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo recently visited Kyiv to hold talks with top Ukrainian officials on plans to strengthen sanctions against Russia.

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