In addition to the new EU measures, on Thursday 8th June the UK announced additional sanctions against Belarus, which came into force on Friday 9th June. The press release announcing the restrictions is available here, and the amending legislation is here.
The new restrictions are intended to restrict sources of revenue to Belarus, combat sanctions circumvention, and reduce the ability of Belarusian media organisations to spread propaganda in the UK. The key measures include:
- broader criteria for designation, creating the possibility that more parties will be designated in the future. Notably, this now includes close family members of parties who are already sanctioned, parties closely connected to the Government of Belarus, along with senior members of other public bodies, the National Bank of Belarus, the armed forces and law-enforcement organs. The criteria for designation now also includes persons who hold the right (directly or indirectly) to nominate at least one director, trustee or equivalent of an entity affiliated with the Government of Belarus or an entity that carries on business of economic or strategic significance to the Government of Belarus;
- expanded export restrictions, including restrictions on supplies of machinery, banknotes (denominated in both sterling and any official currency of the EU), and items related to chemical and biological weapons manufacturing;
- expanded restrictions on imports from Belarus, applying to Belarusian gold and gold jewellery (including gold processed overseas and incorporating Belarusian gold), cement, rubber and wood products;
- restrictions on the provision of certain internet services to particular restricted parties (these restrictions relate to services provided by social media companies, internet access providers, and operators of app stores); and
- a widening of the restrictions on dealings in transferable securities and money-market instruments issued by Belarusian entities. The prohibition now extends to transferrable securities or money-market instruments issued by a non-natural person acting on behalf or at the direction of a person already covered by the prohibition.
Many of these restrictions reflect either existing UK sanctions against Russia, or existing EU sanctions against Belarus.