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Sanctions see $219.5m in Russian assets frozen

Kathy Lynn Simmons, the Attorney-General, who said Russian assets worth almost $220 million have been frozen in Bermuda under sanctions imposed after Russia invaded Ukraine (File photograph)

Russian assets worth $219.5 million have been frozen in Bermuda since sanctions were imposed after the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Kathy Lynn Simmons, the Attorney-General, praised the efforts of the Financial Sanctions Implementation Unit for its work and said she would expect the tally to increase over the next six months.

Ms Simmons told MPs: “Since February 2022, the FSIU has logged 139 compliance reporting forms, including notification of frozen assets totalling over $219.5 million.

“The FSIU has embraced the important role in ensuring sanctions obligations are complied with in Bermuda.

“It is crucial for both the public and private sector to understand their sanctions obligations.

“The FSIU intends to expand its engagement with various sectors in order to ensure sanctions measures are implemented in an effective manner thus increasing compliance and combating circumvention of sanctions obligations.

“They have steadied Bermuda’s role in the regime and will continue their vigilance using all tools at their disposal.

“The FSIU plays an integral role in our economy. It ensures that Bermuda maintains its reputation as a co-operative jurisdiction with a robust sanctions framework to combat the circumvention of financial sanctions.“

Referring to the sanctions regulations set up by Britain, the Attorney-General said: “Financial provisions under the regime impose asset freezes on designated persons; prevent dealing with or the making available of assets owned or controlled by designated persons as well as other financial and investment restrictions.

“This includes the recent prohibition on the provision of trust services to or for the benefit of certain designated persons or for the benefit of persons connected with Russia.

“Under the trade provisions, a number of prohibitions are in force. These include import, export, supply and transfer bans on military, aviation, space, oil refining, energy-related and infrastructure-related goods and technology, as well as chemical and biological weapons.

“This also includes technical assistance, financial services, funds, brokering services and other services in relation to any of these goods and related technology.

“Russian aircraft and ships are prohibited from entering territory airspace and ports and the registration of designated vessels in Bermuda is also banned.”

Ms Simmons said that if she had to make a similar statement in six months’ time, she would expect the amount of frozen assets to have increased.

As a result of international sanctions against Moscow, the Bermuda Civil Aviation Authority has lost 85 per cent of its aircraft registry revenue.

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Published May 22, 2023 at 7:49 am (Updated May 22, 2023 at 7:49 am)

Sanctions see $219.5m in Russian assets frozen

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