Finance (International)

Actions by Turkey and Hungary help Russia

Europe’s effort to stand up to Vladimir Putin is being slowed by the leaders of Hungary and Turkey. A procedural vote on NATO moving ahead quickly with the membership applications of Sweden and Finland was blocked by Turkey on Wednesday. For its part, Hungary continues to block all European Union efforts to put an embargo on Russian oil. [node:read-more:link]

More heavy weapons for Ukraine

The European Union is giving Ukraine another €500 million to buy heavy weapons to fend off the Russian invasion, the bloc's foreign policy head said today against the backdrop of a G-7 meeting in Germany. Also, Canada and the other bloc members are planning to examine how to gain access to millions of tonnes of globally-critical grain in the besieged country. [node:read-more:link]

Russian oil boycott urged

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told the European Parliament today that the 27-nation bloc should ban oil imports from Russia and target its largest bank and major broadcasters in a new sanctions package. “We will make sure that we phase out Russian oil in an orderly fashion, in a way that allows us and our partners to secure alternative supply routes and minimizes the impact on global markets,” she said, conceding that getting unanimity would “not be easy.” [node:read-more:link]

EU divided on Russian energy

The European Union is in step with many other countries in sanctioning Russia over its invasion of Ukraine but is split internally when it comes to dependence on Russian energy supplies. EU ministers met May 2 in Brussels to discuss the situation but remain divided as they pursue alternatives. [node:read-more:link]

Russia avoids defaulting on debt

A potential default on its foreign debt May 4 has been avoided by Russia paying US$650 million in interest. “There cannot be any talk of default,” Elvira Nabiullina, head of Russia’s central bank said April 29, acknowledging that there had been “difficulties with payments.” Her country holds some $40 billion in bonds on which interest must be paid in the currency specified. [node:read-more:link]

BVI Premier arrested in Miami

Premier Andrew Fahie of the British Virgin Islands has been charged in Miami with drug smuggling and money laundering. Drug Enforcement Agency officers, who had posed as a Mexican drug traffickers, say the politician had agreed to a £560,000 payment to allow traffickers to use the Caribbean territory’s ports. A BVI port official and her son also have been charged. [node:read-more:link]

Parliament calls Russia genocidal

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been formally labelled an act of genocide by the House of Commons, which unanimously approved a motion to that effect April 27 by Alberta MP Heather McPherson. “Sanctions have been implemented too slowly,” she said, urging the government to direct more funds to the International Criminal Court to ensure it has the resources to investigate atrocities in Ukraine. [node:read-more:link]

Seized foreign assets could be sold

Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly served notice April 26 that the government would amend change its sanctions law to permit the sale of seized and sanctioned foreign assets, using the revenues to compensate victims or to help rebuild a foreign state. “These changes would make Canada's sanctions regime the first in the G7 to allow these actions,” she said, zeroing in on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. “We will continue to apply maximum pressure on the Putin regime and impose severe costs for this war of choice.” [node:read-more:link]

Russia cutting gas supplies

Russia stopped supplying natural gas to Bulgaria and Poland today, ostensibly for refusing to pay in roubles but more likely in retaliation for European economies’ support for sanctions over the war in Ukraine. Accusations by European leaders of “blackmail” were immediately dismissed by the Kremlin. [node:read-more:link]

Saudis counting on Republican rebound?

Saudi Arabia appears to be banking on Republicans regaining control of Congress in next November’s midterm elections by not only refusing to sanction Russia for its Ukraine invasion, but also by placing $2 billion in a new investment fund run by Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner. The kingdom’s de facto ruler, Mohammed bin Salman, reportedly declined to take a call from President Joe Biden last month and a former British ambassador suspects the Saudi leader “is betting on the Republicans winning big in the midterms and then regaining the presidency – with or without Trump.” [node:read-more:link]

More Canadians on Putin’s blacklist

Premiers, mayors, intelligence and military officials and a few journalists are now banned from entering Russia following the latest round of sanctions announced by President Vladimir Putin's regime. All are accused by the foreign ministry of involvement “in the development, substantiation and implementation of the Russophobic course of the ruling regime in Canada.” [node:read-more:link]

Canada joins in G20 walkout

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland joined representatives from several other countries in a walkout from today’s G20 economic summit, say that Russia should not be participating in the event. “This week's meetings in Washington are about supporting the world economy,” said Freeland, participating in her capacity as Finance Minister. “Russia's illegal invasion of Ukraine is a grave threat to the global economy.” [node:read-more:link]

North Korea benefits from cryptoheist

Hackers associated with the North Korean government have been identified by the U.S. as responsible for the theft of $620 million in Ethereum cryptocurrency from a Vietnam-based video gaming studio in March. “We were able to confirm Lazarus Group and APT38, cyber actors associated with the DPRK, are responsible,” the FBI says. The U.S. Treasury Department has sanctioned the cryptocurrency address used by the hackers. [node:read-more:link]

Cryptocurrency researcher gets prison time

A former U.S. researcher at the Ethereum Foundation, a non-profit organisation focused on the technology behind cryptocurrencies, has been sentenced to more than five years in prison for conspiring to help North Korea to evade sanctions by using cryptocurrency. Virgil Griffith, who pled guilty to violating the U.S. International Emergency Economic Powers Act, also was fined $100,000. [node:read-more:link]


Subscribe to RSS - Finance (International)