Sanctions Train Rolls On

May 31 the European Commission finalized its sixth round of sanctions on imports of Russian oil (not gas).  According to Commission President Charles Michel, “the European Council was able to agree on a sixth package of sanctions that will, to be concrete, make it possible to ban Russian oil with a temporary exception concerning oil that comes by pipeline. 

“To be very clear, this means that there is immediately an impact of 75% of Russian oil that is targeted by this measure. And this means that before the end of the year, nearly 90% of Russian oil that is imported at European level will be covered by this measure.

Earlier, President Biden and his G-7 counterparts met with President Zelenskyy of Ukraine May 8 and announced another raft of sanctions to support the war effort. 

New initiatives include:

·      Sanctioning three of Russian’s state-controlled television stations, 

·      Prohibitions on U.S. persons providing accounting, trust and corporate formation, and management consulting services to any person in the Russian Federation, 

·      Further industrial sanctions, and addition of more individuals subject to visa restrictions. 

In support of these actions, Commerce published revisions to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) May 11, amending part 746 of the EAR (Embargoes and Other Special Controls) to broaden the scope of industry sanctions. The Rule adds 205 HTS codes at the 6-digit level and 478 corresponding 10-digit Schedule B numbers to supplement 4 to Part 746. These should be reviewed carefully by those brave souls still seeking to grow their Russian sales.

 The actions also named nine Russian shipping concerns and their vessels, along with companies associated with the Moscow Industrial Bank and executives of Gazprombank.

The ban on accounting, trust and corporate formation, or management consulting services may prove nettlesome for professional services providers. In conjunction with the Executive Order, OFAC issued two General Licenses, GL34 and GL35 which provide limited safe haven for the winding down of operations and provision of credit rating and audit services. Both GLs note that transactions otherwise prohibited remain so, including those with blocked individuals and entities.

OFAC General License 31- Patent & Trademark Sanctions

Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) May 5 issued General License 31, stating that routine patent, trademark, copyright, and other intellectual property protection measures associated with the Russian Federation are permitted.

Filing applications, receipt, and maintenance of intellectual protection is permitted, including prosecution of enforcement proceedings. Transactions with sanctioned financial institutions remain prohibited.

In March the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) terminated engagement with Russia’s agency in charge of intellectual property, the Federal Service for Intellectual Property (Rospatent), and with the Eurasian Patent Organization.

The USPTO also terminated engagement with officials from the national intellectual property office of Belarus.   Questions regarding dealings with Rospatent should be directed to OFAC at
Month / Year / Volume / Number June 2022 - Vol 36, Num 6

The Export Practitioner

The Export Practitioner is the only monthly magazine devoted exclusively to news and analysis of U.S. export controls and trade sanctions.

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