Since March 2014, the EU has progressively imposed restrictive measures (sanctions) against Russia, initially in response to the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol and the deliberate destabilisation of Ukraine. On 23 February 2022, the EU expanded the sanctions in response to the recognition of the non-government controlled areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine and the ordering of Russian armed forces into those areas. After 24 February 2022, in response to Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine, the EU massively expanded the sanctions. It added a significant number of persons and entities to the sanctions list, and adopted unprecedented measures with the aim of significantly weakening Russia's economic base, depriving it of critical technologies and markets, and significantly curtailing its ability to wage war.
In parallel, the EU sanctions regime concerning Belarus has been expanded in response to that country’s involvement in Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and in addition to the sanctions already in place in view of the situation in Belarus. This sanctions regime consists of an array of financial, economic and trade measures.
The respective Council Regulations identified below are addressed to all persons, entities and bodies under EU jurisdiction, for which they create legal obligations.
Timeline: measures adopted in 2022
In reaction to Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine the European Union adopted sanctions against Russia.
Here is the list of the financial sanctions that have been adopted.
- 3 June 2022 - Sixth package
The Council of the European Union adopted the following additional measures
- Oil import restrictions
- Crude and refined oil embargo: These sanctions will come into force with immediate effect, and will phase out Russian oil imports in an orderly fashion. For seaborne crude oil, spot market transactions and execution of existing contracts will be permitted for six months after entry into force, while for petroleum products, these will be permitted for eight months after entry into force. Member States who have a particular pipeline dependency on Russia can benefit from a temporary exemption and continue to receive crude oil delivered by pipeline, until the Council decides otherwise. However, Member States benefiting from this exemption will not be able to resell such crude oil and petroleum products to other Member States or third countries.
- Due to its specific geographical exposure, a special temporary derogation until the end of 2024 has been agreed for Bulgaria which will be able to continue to import crude oil and petroleum products via maritime transport. In addition, Croatia will be able to authorise until the end of 2023 the import of Russian vacuum gas oil which is needed for the functioning of its refinery.
- Oil transport services
- After a wind down period of 6 months, EU operators will be prohibited from insuring and financing the transport, in particular through maritime routes, of oil to third countries.
- This will make it particularly difficult for Russia to continue exporting its crude oil and petroleum products to the rest of the world since EU operators are important providers of such services.
- Financial and business services measures
- An additional three Russian banks, Russia's largest bank Sberbank, Credit Bank of Moscow, and Russian Agricultural Bank - and the Belarusian Bank For Development And Reconstruction have been removed from SWIFT. These banks are critical for the Russian financial system and Putin's ability to further wage war. It will solidify the isolation of the Russian financial sector from the global system.
- The measures on trusts have been refined and appropriate exceptions have been laid down in a revised version of the provision (e.g. for humanitarian purposes or civil society).
- The provision of certain business-relevant services - directly or indirectly – such as accounting, auditing, statutory audit, bookkeeping and tax consulting services, business and management consulting, and public relations services to the Russian government, as well as to legal persons, entities or bodies established in Russia are now prohibited.
- Broadcasting suspension
- The broadcasting activities of another three Russian State outlets – Rossiya RTR/RTR Planeta, Rossiya 24/Russia 24, and TV Centre International – have been suspended. They are among the most important pro-Kremlin disinformation outlets targeting audiences in Ukraine and the EU, and disseminating propaganda in support of Russia's aggression against Ukraine.
- Several regulators in EU Member States have already taken action against those Russian state-controlled broadcasters and channels. They will now be barred from distributing their content across the EU, in whatever shape or form, be it on cable, via satellite, on the internet or via smartphone apps.
- The advertising of products or services on sanctioned outlets has also been prohibited.
- Export restrictions
- The list of advanced technology items banned from export to Russia has been expanded to include additional chemicals that could be used in the process of manufacture of chemical weapons, already controlled since 2013 for other destinations such as Syria. Moreover, today's package further expands the list of natural, legal persons or entities associated with Russia's military-industrial complex. These natural, legal persons or entities are involved in various sectors, such as electronics, communications, weapons, shipyards, engineering and scientific research. This update brings the EU in alignment with United States measures, while other partners are expected to align in the near future.
- The package adds the United Kingdom and the Republic of Korea to the Annex of partner countries that have adopted substantially equivalent export restrictions.
- The list of Belarusian entities subject to restrictions has been significantly widened (from 1 entity to 25). This is related to authorisations for the sale, supply, transfer or export of dual-use goods and technology, as well as goods and technology which might contribute to Belarus's military and technological enhancement, or to the development of its defence and security sector.
For more information
- Oil import restrictions
- 8 April 2022 - Fifth package
The Council of the European Union adopted the following restrictive measures
- Coal ban: An import ban on all forms of Russian coal
- Financial measures: A full transaction ban and asset freeze on four additional Russian banks. A prohibition on providing high-value crypto-asset services to Russia. A prohibition on providing trust services to wealthy Russians, making it more difficult for them to store their wealth in the EU
- Transport: A full ban on Russian and Belarusian freight road operators working in the EU. Certain exemptions cover essentials, such as mail, agricultural and food products, humanitarian aid as well as energy. An entry ban on Russian-flagged vessels to EU ports. Exemptions apply for medical, food, energy, and humanitarian purposes, amongst others
- Targeted export bans: Further targeted export bans which include, in particular, quantum computing, advanced semiconductors, sensitive machinery, transportation and chemicals
- Extending import bans: Additional import bans including cement, rubber products, wood, spirits (including vodka), liquor, high-end seafood (including caviar), and an anti-circumvention measure against potash imports from Belarus
- Excluding Russia from public contracts and European money: Full prohibition on the participation of Russian nationals and entities in procurement contracts in the EU. Restriction on financial and non-financial support to Russian publicly owned or controlled entities under EU, Euratom and Member State programmes
- Legal clarifications: Extension of the prohibitions on the export of banknotes and on the sale of transferrable securities to Russian nationals or entities to all official EU currencies
- Assets freezes: Adding of a further 217 individuals and 18 entities on the list
- Question and answers on the fifth package
- Council Regulation (EU) 2022/576 of 8 April 2022 amending Regulation (EU) No 833/2014 concerning restrictive measures in view of Russia’s actions destabilising the situation in Ukraine
- Council Regulation (EU) 2022/580 of 8 April 2022 amending Regulation (EU) No 269/2014 concerning restrictive measures in respect of actions undermining or threatening the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine
- Council Regulation (EU) 2022/577 of 8 April 2022 amending Regulation (EC) No 765/2006 concerning restrictive measures in view of the situation in Belarus and the involvement of Belarus in the Russian aggression against Ukraine
- 15 March 2022 - Fourth package
The Council adopted the following restrictive measures
- A full prohibition on transactions with certain Russian State-owned enterprises, with the exception of State-owned banks, railways and the maritime shipping register
- Prohibit EU agencies to provide financial rating services to Russian companies
- A ban on imports of iron and steel products currently under EU safeguard measures as well as new investments in the Russian energy sector, with the exception of nuclear energy and the transport of energy products
- Prohibit the export of luxury goods
- Add 15 individuals and 9 entities to the list of sanctioned persons and entities, to include more oligarchs and business elites linked to the Kremlin, as well as companies active in military and defence sectors, and disinformation. With these additions, the list comprises a total of 877 individuals and 62 entities.
- 9 March 2022 - “Compliance package”
The Council adopted the following restrictive measures
- Exclude three banks of Belarus from the SWIFT system
- Prohibit transactions with the Central Bank of Belarus related to the management of reserves or assets, and the provision of public financing for trade with and investment in Belarus
- Clarify the notion of “transferable securities” so as to clearly include crypto-assets, and thus ensure the proper implementation of the sectoral restrictions in place
- Prohibit the listing and provision of services in relation to shares of Belarus state-owned entities on EU trading venues as of 12 April 2022
- Significantly limit the financial inflows from Belarus to the EU, by prohibiting the acceptance of deposits exceeding €100.000 from Belarusian nationals or residents, the holding of accounts of Belarusian clients by the EU central securities depositories, as well as the selling of euro-denominated securities to Belarusian clients
- Prohibit the provision of euro denominated banknotes to Belarus
- Further restrictive measures with regard to the export of maritime navigation goods and radio communication technology to Russia
- Add 160 individuals to the list of sanctioned persons and entities. With these additions, the list comprises a total of 862 individuals and 53 entities
- Commission press release of 9 March 2022
- Council press release on the extended sanctions adopted on 9 March 2022
- Council press release on the extended financial measures adopted on 9 March 2022
- Sanctions adopted on 9 March 2022 published in the Official Journal
- Extended financial measures adopted on 9 March 2022 published in the Official Journal
- 2 March 2022 - Third package
The Council adopted the following restrictive measures
- Exclude key Russian banks from the SWIFT system, the world's dominant financial messaging system. This measure will stop these banks from conducting their financial transactions worldwide in a fast and efficient manner. Today's decision has been closely coordinated with the EU's international partners, such as the United States and the United Kingdom
- Prohibit investing in projects co-financed by the Russian Direct Investment Fund
- Prohibit the provision of euro-denominated banknotes to Russia
- Prohibit state-owned media Russia Today and Sputnik' to broadcast in the EU
- Restrictions on trade against Belarus and add 22 individuals of the Belarus military personnel to the list of sanctioned persons and entities. With these additions, the list comprises a total of 702 individuals and 53 entities
- Commission press release of 2 March 2022 on SWIFT and further restrictive measures
- Council press release of 2 March 2022 on SWIFT and further restrictive measures
- Council press release of 2 March 2022 on Belarus
- Sanctions adopted on 2 March 2022 on SWIFT published in the Official Journal
- Sanctions adopted on 2 March 2022 on Belarus published in the Official Journal
- 28 February 2022 - Third package
The Council adopted the following restrictive measures
- A ban on transactions with the Russian Central Bank, aiming at preventing the Russian Central Bank from accessing its large amounts of foreign reserves held in the EU
- A ban on the overflight of EU airspace and on access to EU airports by Russian carriers of all kinds
- Add 26 individuals and 1 entity to the list of sanctioned persons and entities. With these additions, the list comprises a total of 680 individuals and 53 entities
- Council press release of 28 February 2022
- Sanctions adopted on 28 February 2022 on transactions with the Russian Central Bank and measures on airspace published in the Official Journal
- Sanctions adopted on 28 February 2022 on the list of sanctioned persons and entities published in the Official Journal
- 25 February 2022 - Second package
- Financial sector sanctions that will cut Russia's access to the most important capital markets, targeting 70% of the Russian banking market, but also key state-owned companies, including the field of defence
- Energy sector sanctions that will prohibit the sale, supply, transfer or export to Russia of specific goods and technologies in oil refining, and will introduce restrictions on the provision of related services
- Transport sector sanctions that will ban the sale of all aircraft, spare parts and equipment to Russian airlines. This will degrade the key sector of Russia's economy and the country's connectivity
- Technology sector sanctions imposing further restrictions on exports of dual-use goods and technology, as well as restrictions on exports of certain goods and technology which might contribute to Russia’s technological enhancement of its defence and security sector
- Visa policy sanctions that mean diplomats and related groups, and business people will no longer have privileged access to the EU. With these additions, the list of sanctioned persons and entities comprises a total of 654 individuals and 52 entities
- 23 February 2022 - First package
In response to Russia recognising the non-government controlled areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine and its decision to send troops into the region, the Council adopted a package of sanctions on 23 February 2022. These sanctions target
- the ability of the Russian state and government to access the EU’s capital and financial markets and services, to limit the financing of escalatory and aggressive policies
- economic relations between the two non-government controlled regions and the EU, to ensure that those responsible clearly feel the economic consequences of their illegal and aggressive actions
- individuals and entities who played a role in undermining or threatening the territorial integrity and independence of Ukraine. With these additions, the list comprises a total of 555 individuals and 52 entities
Overview of sanctions in place
Economic sanctions on Russia
The economic sanctions target exchanges with Russia in specific economic sectors. The sanctions regime laying down these economic sanctions consists of Council Decision 2014/512/CFSP and Council Regulation (EU) No 833/2014.
As of 8 April 2022, the economic sanctions regime includes the following measures
- prohibition on trade in arms (not covered on this website)
- prohibition on public financing or financial assistance for trade with, or investment in Russia
- prohibition on investment and contribution to projects co-financed by the Russian Direct Investment Fund
- prohibition on exports of dual-use goods as well as advanced technology items that can contribute to Russia’s defense and security capabilities
- prohibition on exports of quantum computing, advanced semiconductors, sensitive machinery, transportation and chemicals
- prohibition on the broadcast in the EU of certain Russian state-owned media outlets
- prohibition on exports of goods for use in the oil industry
- prohibition on new investments in the energy sector
- prohibition on certain operations in the aviation sector
- prohibition on Russian freight operators
- prohibition to access EU ports
- prohibition on exports of maritime navigation goods
- prohibition on exports of luxury goods
- prohibition on imports of coal
- prohibition on imports of iron and steel
- prohibition on imports of cement, rubber products, wood, spirits, liquor, high-end seafood
- prohibition on the financing of the Russian government and Central Bank as well as banning all those transactions related to the management of the Central Bank’s reserves and assets
- prohibitions on a range of financial interactions, financial rating services and transactions with Russia, as well as prohibitions on the provision of banknotes and sale of securities
- decoupling of certain Russian banks from the SWIFT messaging system
- prohibition on providing high-value crypto services and trust services
- full exclusion of Russia from public contracts and European money
Individual restrictive measures
The measures consist of travel bans and financial measures (asset freezes and a prohibition to make funds or economic resources available) that now target a total of 1,091 individuals and over 80 entities responsible for undermining Ukraine’s territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence. This sanctions regime consists of Council Decision 2014/145/CFSP and Council Regulation (EU) No 269/2014.
Financial measures were also adopted against persons responsible for the misappropriation of Ukrainian State funds, and persons responsible for human rights violations in Ukraine. This sanctions regime consists of Council Decision 2014/119/CFSP and Council Regulation (EU) No 208/2014.
Note that certain Russian persons and entities are listed separately in the EU sanctions regimes concerning human rights; cyber-attacks; chemical weapons; Libya; and Syria. For more information please access the EU sanctions map.
Restrictions on trade and investment with certain territories
Since 2014, restrictions on trade and investment have been imposed in regard to Crimea and Sevastopol. This sanctions regime consists of Council Decision 2014/386/CFSP and Council Regulation (EU) No 692/2014.
In 2022, restrictions on trade and investment were also imposed in regard to the non-government controlled territories of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine. This sanctions regime consists of Council Decision (CFSP) 2022/266 and Council Regulation (EU) 2022/263. The measures therein are very similar to those concerning Crimea and Sevastopol.
Restrictive measures concerning Belarus
Since 2020, an array of restrictive measures have been imposed in regard to Belarus, including economic sanctions, individual restrictive measures and restrictions on trade. All these measures form part of a single sanctions regime consisting of Council Decision 2012/642/CFSP and Council Regulation (EC) No 765/2006.
Ukraine territorial integrity; Misappropriations
Crimea; Donetsk & Luhansk
Frequently asked questions:
Circumvention and due diligence
Execution of contracts and claims
B. Individual financial measures
Assets freeze and prohibition to provide funds or economic resources
Intellectual property rights
C. Finance and banking
Insurance and reinsurance
Article 5g of Council Regulation No 833/2014 and Article 1z of Council Regulation No 765/2006 establish reporting obligations from credit institutions to their national competent authority (NCA) or to the Commission by 27 May 2022 on deposits exceeding 100 000 EUR held by Russian or Belarusian nationals or natural persons residing in Russia or Belarus, or by legal persons, entities or bodies established in Russia or Belarus.
The European Banking Authority (EBA) has developed a template to help credit institutions and NCAs in such reporting. There is no obligation to use this template, but credit institutions and NCAs encouraged to apply it in order to ensure supervisory convergence and reduction of the associated reporting costs, especially for cross-border banks. It is worth noting that although the reporting template is prepared with support from the EBA, there is no reporting line to the EBA