MOSCOW, April 28 (RIA Novosti) – The new batch of sanctions against Russia announced Monday by the United States and the European Union will not hit hard on Russia, Eric Kraus, Director at Principal Asset Management and keen observer of the Russian and world politics, told the Voice of Russia radio station Monday.
“These are another round of pseudo-sanctions. For the Americans they can sanction Russia with relative impunity because they don’t really have much in cash flows. For the EU Russia is critically important and they simply are not getting the cooperation they want to,” the expert said.
The European Union has made a decision to sanction additional 15 Russian officials accused of allegedly undermining democracy and inciting violence in Ukraine, bringing the total number in the blacklist to 48.
The sanctions include individual asset freezes and travel bans and do not target Russia’s economic sectors.
Earlier on Monday the United States came up with a similar decision, imposing sanctions against 7 Russian individuals and 17 companies close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney announced that the United States would impose sanctions against Russia’s economic sectors should it launch a military intervention in Ukraine.
According to Kraus the threats coming from the United States and European Union are another form of war that the West is waging on Russia.
“Basically warfare is no longer carried out with cyber planes and tanks. It is carried out with banking systems, cash flows. They can’t really go to war with Russia. So, they are doing what they can to cause damage. Mr. Putin has made it very clear that Russia has got to regain her economic independence. They have to squeeze out Visa and Master Card who make about 3-4 billion dollars a year in Russia and who are screaming at present as they are going to lose this market. They’ve got to force out the American banks and they’ve got to become far less dependent on Western investment flows, cash flows and turn towards China, turn towards Korea, turn towards India, towards Asia, which is basically where all of the future economic growth is going to be anyway,” Kraus stressed.
The US and EU imposed first targeted sanctions against Moscow following its reunification with Crimea, a former region of Ukraine that held a referendum in March in which 96 percent of population voted for integration with Russia.
The Russian Foreign Ministry repeatedly said that the language of sanctions in relation to Russia was inappropriate and counterproductive.