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G7 Summit To Put More Restrictions On Russian Energy, Trade

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Members of the powerful Group of Seven (G7) countries are set to put more restrictions On Russia in the summit this week in Japan. The plan to strengthen these restrictions includes energy and exports boosting the efforts of the world’s largest country.

These new steps towards weakening Russia’s efforts in the war in Ukraine include eluding sanctions on third countries, and hamper Russia’s future energy production and prevent trade that helps Russia’s military, according to those familiar with the matter.

The US officials also seek to make G7 nations agree to put sanctions on items of export, at least certain goods, that is, ban them unless there’s an approval. The Biden administration has encouraged G7 members to change the group’s sanctions policy, which now permits the sale of any commodities to Russia unless they are specifically prohibited. It might now be more difficult for Moscow to identify any holes in the sanctions system. The US intends to put these restrictions on the more vulnerable areas of Russia’s military.

A US official said, “You should expect to see, in a handful of spaces, particularly relating to Russia’s defense industrial base, that changes in presumption happen.”

The G7 nations comprise of the United States, Japan, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.

The G7 Summit’s focus has turned to finding newer ways to restrict Russia’s aid. The measures already taken include strictness regarding exports to restrictions on visa and an oil price cap. These measures have weighed heavy on Russian President Vladimir Putin but his intentions of backing out seem nowhere close.

However, some of the countries supporting US’ stance in war have protested the option of putting a total ban on trade and putting category-by-category exemptions.

The European Union has its own strategy and is presently finalising its eleventh package of sanctions since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. These sanctions intend to focus on those individuals and nations that disobey present trade restrictions.

A top German government official said, “The sometimes-discussed approach of ‘we ban everything first and allow exceptions’ will not work in our view. We want to be very, very precise and we want to avoid unintended side effects.”

While this is going on, the G7 leaders’ language changes, such as those that state that certain commerce is prohibited unless specifically exempted, would not instantly result in additional prohibitions or even a shift in Russia’s stance.

According to a US official, “At least on day one, that change in presumption doesn’t change the substance of what’s allowed, but it matters for the long-term trajectory of where we’re going and the restrictiveness of the overall regime.”

Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Ukraine’s President, has been in Europe for discussions with Pope Francis and the presidents of France, Italy, and Germany. He is anticipated to speak to the G7 leaders during their summit in Hiroshima, according to the officials.

Dmitry Medvedev, a former Russian president, predicted last month that Moscow would end a Black Sea grain agreement that permits crucial grain exports from Ukraine if the G7 decided to impose export restrictions on the nation. Another important subject at the G7 is anticipated to be food security in the post-war period.

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