The European Commission wants to ban the import of Russian coal and prevent Russian ships from entering European ports. President Ursula von der Leyen announced this on Tuesday.
Three days after the first images emerged from Bucha, where hundreds of corpses of civilians were found after the Russian withdrawal, von der Leyen presented a fifth sanction package with which the European Union wanted to punish Russia for the invasion of Ukraine.
“Russia is waging a brutal and ruthless war not only against the courageous Ukrainian troops but also against civilians,” said von der Leyen. She underlined that the sanctions have already hit the Kremlin hard, but “we need to increase the pressure further” in light of these events.
For the first time, the import of fossil fuels from Russia is targeted. The Commission calls for a ban on coal imports worth EUR 4 billion a year. In addition, she is continuing to work on sanctions regarding the import of Russian oil, von der Leyen said.
The Commission also wants Russian ships to stop docking in European ports. It does, however, provide for exemptions for agricultural and food products and energy products. In addition, the Commission is pushing for a complete transaction ban for four banks, which together represent a quarter of the market share in the Russian banking sector. This includes VTB, the second largest bank in Russia.
The Commission also wants to issue around 10 billion euros in additional export bans, including for quantum computers and advanced semiconductors. In addition, it proposes 5.5 billion euros in new import bans, including for wood, cement and spirits.
Finally, the Commission favours a general ban on Russian companies from participating in public tenders in the Member States.