As part of their unprecedented economic sanctions against Russia, the US and its allies announced last week they were moving to block financial transactions with Russia’s Central Bank (CBR) that involve gold, aiming to further restrict the country’s ability to use its international reserves. RT talked to Sergey Kopylov, a junior partner at consulting company BSC and a lead researcher at Plekhanov Russian University of Economics, to find out what it means and whether Western countries could really freeze Russian bullion holdings.
Sanctions mean that the sale or purchase of gold by Russia is prohibited in a number of countries, such as the US, UK, Switzerland, Europe, and others. In addition, they prohibit the circulation of gold bars produced in Russia starting from March 7, Kopylov said.
“Potentially other jurisdictions may also follow the same sanctions. However, to date, all the countries in the Middle East and Southeast Asia have refrained from supporting the sanctions regime. Thus, there are no obstacles to the sale of Russian gold in these regions, apart from the historical absence of such a practice,” he said.