Fact Sheet: The United States Continues to Impose Costs on Russia and Belarus for Putin’s War of Choice
OFFICE OF THE SPOKESPERSON
MARCH 2, 2022
Today, the United States, in coordination with Allies and partners, is imposing additional economic costs on Russia and Belarus in response to President Putin’s brutal invasion of Ukraine. The United States will take actions to hold Belarus accountable for enabling Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, weaken the Russian defense sector and its military power for years to come, target Russia’s most important sources of wealth, and ban Russian airlines from U.S. airspace.
As a result of our historic, multilateral coordination, Russia has become a global economic and financial pariah. Over 30 countries representing well over half the world’s economy have announced sanctions and export controls targeting Russia. Russia is further isolated from the international financial and trade system. We are preventing Putin from accessing his war chest to soften the blow of our actions and support his invasion of Ukraine. The United States and governments all over the world are going after Putin’s cronies and their families by identifying and freezing the assets they hold in our respective jurisdictions – their yachts, luxury apartments, money, and other ill-gotten gains. And the United States and our Allies are acting in concert to minimize the impact of these measures on our economies, including through a coordinated release of 60 million barrels of oil from strategic reserves. We will continue to impose costs with Allies and partners so long as Putin continues to escalate.
Today’s actions include:
- Sweeping restrictions on Belarus to choke off its import of technological goods in response to its support of Putin’s war of choice. The Department of Commerce will extend the stringent export control policies put in place for Russia to Belarus. This action will help prevent diversion of items, technologies, and software through Belarus to Russia and will significantly degrade both countries’ ability to sustain their military aggression and project power. This will severely limit the ability of Russia and Belarus to obtain the materials they need to support their military aggression against Ukraine, project power in ways that threaten regional stability and undermine global peace and security.
- Full blocking sanctions on Russian defense entities. The Department of State will impose sweeping sanctions that target Russia’s defense sector to further restrict Putin’s war machine. This action will impose significant costs on Russian weapon development and production companies. In total, 22 Russian defense-related entities will be designated, including firms that make combat aircraft, infantry fighting vehicles, electronic warfare systems, missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles for Russia’s military.
- Export Controls Targeting Oil Refining, a Key Revenue Source that Supports Russian Military. Through export controls on oil and gas extraction equipment, the Commerce Department will impose restrictions on technology exports that would support Russia’s refining capacity over the long term. The United States and our Allies and partners do not have a strategic interest in reducing the global supply of energy – which is why we have carved out energy payments from our financial sanctions. But we and our Allies and partners share a strong interest in degrading Russia’s status as a leading energy supplier over time. These actions will help further that goal, while protecting American consumers.
- Targeting Entities Supporting the Russian and Belarusian Military. The Commerce Department, in coordination with its interagency partners, will add entities that have been involved in, contributed to, or otherwise supported the Russian and Belarusian security services, military and defense sectors, and/or military and defense research and development efforts to the Entity List. These actions will ensure that the military as well as the aerospace, maritime and high-technology sectors do not obtain U.S. technology goods and technology that can be used to support Russian technical maintenance and innovation.
- Banning Russian aircraft from entering and using domestic U.S. airspace. As the President announced, the United States will close off American air space to all Russian flights – further isolating Russia – and adding an additional squeeze on its economy. This includes aircraft certified, operated, registered or controlled by any person connected with Russia. This includes revoking all Russian airlines’ – both passenger and cargo – ability to operate to and from U.S. destinations, as well as refusing entry of any Russian-operated aircraft into U.S. airspace. With this action, the United States stands with over 30 of the world’s most important aviation markets in denying Russian carriers the ability to conduct business.