New Zealand unveils new trade sanctions against Russia
35% tariff slapped on all imports from Russia, existing export ban on industrial products extended
New Zealand on Wednesday announced new sanctions against Russia for its war on Ukraine, terming the measures its “most significant economic response to the Russian invasion to date.”
New Zealand will apply a 35% tariff on all imports from Russia and extend the existing export ban on industrial products closely connected to strategic Russian industries, according to a government statement.
“The images and reports emerging of atrocities committed against civilians in Bucha and other regions of Ukraine is abhorrent and reprehensible, and New Zealand continues to respond to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s mindless acts of aggression,” said Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta.
The new measures will come into force from April 25 and send “a clear message that New Zealand will not fund or support the Russia war machine,” said Trade and Export Growth Minister Damien O’Connor.
“These trade sanctions, in addition to the other measures taken already, work in tandem with Ukraine and international partners to put the most pressure possible on Putin’s regime to cease hostilities,” he added.
Mahuta said New Zealand has also joined 41 other countries in supporting the call for an International Criminal Court probe into Russia’s “war crimes and atrocities committed against innocent civilians.”
Putin and Moscow are facing even more vehement criticism from the international community after Ukraine accused Russian forces of committing “genocide” and “war crimes” in Bucha, a town near the capital Kyiv.
Russia has rejected the allegations as a “fake news attack,” arguing that the images of dead bodies and footage of slain civilians that have drawn global outrage were staged after Russian forces withdrew from the city.
According to UN estimates, at least 1,480 civilians have been killed and 2,195 injured in Ukraine since Feb. 24, with the true figure feared to be far higher.
More than 4.24 million Ukrainians have fled to other countries, while over 7.1 million more are internally displaced, according to the UN refugee agency.
*Writing by Islamuddin Sajid