The UK announced on 15 March 2022 that it will impose import tariffs on hundreds of key Russian products. In addition to banning the export of luxury goods to Russia, the UK government has also published an initial list of goods worth £900 million – including vodka – which will now face additional 35 percent tariff, on top of any tariffs that are currently applicable.
These relevant products are as follows: Iron, steel, fertilisers, wood, tyres, railway containers, cement, copper, aluminium, silver, lead, iron ore, residue/food waste products, beverages, spirits and vinegar (this includes vodka), glass and glassware, cereals, oil seeds, paper and paperboard, machinery, works of art, antiques, fur skins and artificial fur, ships and white fish.
In accordance with the UK Government press release on the new measures (available here) the choosing of these products is designed to inflict maximum damage on the Russian economy while minimising the impact on the UK.
The UK has also decided, alongside other World Trade Organisation (“WTO“) members, to deny Russia and Belarus access to Most Favoured Nation tariff for hundreds of their exports, depriving both nations key benefits of WTO membership.
The UK Government’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak said on the new measures: “our new tariffs will further isolate the Russian economy from global trade, ensuring it does not benefit from the rules-based international system it does not respect.”