US Bans Russian Vodka Imports and Will Seek to Revoke Moscow’s Preferred Trade Partner Status
The United States banned the import of Russian vodka, diamonds and seafood as a new form of pressure in the face of the invasion that Moscow ordered in Ukraine.
The measure, introduced by President Joe Biden in a televised intervention, he will deny the Kremlin more than a billion dollars.
The president also indicated that he will prevent exports of American luxury goods, an industry that generates $550 million dollars a year. Among the products that the Russian market will not have access to are some watches, vehicles and jewelry.
Likewise, the US and its allies will seek revoke the status of permanent trading partner of Russiaone of the fundamental principles of international trade upheld by the World Trade Organization.
“Putin is an aggressor. He is an aggressor and must pay a price,” the president said.
“We are showing our strength and we are not going to give up,” he added.
What does it mean that Russia is not a preferred trade partner?
According to Biden, this change will allow the North American country to establish new tariffs on a wide range of Russian products, which will directly impact its economy, already affected by Western sanctions.
The US has revoked this status from only two other countries: North Korea and Cuba.
Economists say the sanctions will push Russia into a severe economic recession this year.
Ukraine and Canada have already made similar decisions against Moscow. The European Union, the G7 and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) partners are also expected to join.
Although Biden requires support from the US Congress, it is not expected that he will have problems in carrying out the measure, since he has the support of the Democratic and Republican delegations on issues related to the conflict between Ukraine and Russia.
In the same way, the president announced that the G7 will work to close the Kremlin’s access to any source of financing from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
Warning to Putin
Biden also alerted Russian President Vladimir Putin that he will pay “a high price” if you use chemical or biological weapons in Ukraine.
At the time, he said that Washington will defend “every inch” of territory from NATO allies.
However, he insisted that he wants to avoid any direct confrontation between NATO and Russia because that would spell the start of World War III.
The US announcements occur when this Friday it was reported that the army led by Moscow intensified its offensive towards the west of the Ukrainian territory, with bombings in Lutsk and Ivano-Frankivsk, towns near Poland and Moldova. Poland is a member of NATO.
Attacks were also reported in Dnipro.
For its part, Russia announced on Thursday that it will ban the export of various products and raw materials to countries that have imposed sanctions against it.
Also the possibility of nationalizing the assets of foreign companies that are in its territory and that decided to leave the country once hostilities began.
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