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Kiev promises IMF to loosen sanctions against Russian banks once security situation allows

April 05, 2017, 18:37 UTC+3 KIEV
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KIEV, April 5. /TASS/. Ukraine will loosen sanctions against banks with Russian state capital, as soon as "the security situation allows it to be done," Ukraine’s Finance Ministry said.

In a supplementary letter of intent dated on March 29, addressed to the head of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde and published on the Ministry’s website of on Wednesday, the Ukrainian authorities say:

"We will weaken these restrictions as soon as the security situation allows this," the document says. It also notes that the sanctions were applied "for national security" of Ukraine.

Sanctions against Russian banks in Ukraine

In January 2017, Ukrainian radicals started attacks on local offices of subsidiaries of Russian banks in the country.

On March 16, Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko imposed one-year sanctions against five banks with Russian state capital operating on the Ukrainian market. Restrictions were introduced against Sberbank, VS Bank, Prominvestbank, VTB Bank and BM Bank. Sanctions include a ban on withdrawal of funds outside of Ukraine, as well as payment of dividends, interest, return of interbank deposits and loans, funds from correspondent accounts of subordinated debt. The ban also concerns distribution of profits and capital of these five banks. Ukraine’s National Bank said then that all lenders with Russian capital operating in the country negotiated potential sale transactions. Russian credit organizations later confirmed those plans.

On March 27 Sberbank said it had signed an agreement on selling 100% of shares in the Ukrainian affiliation to a consortium of investors comprising Latvia's Norvik Banka owned by Grigory Guselnikov and a private Belarusian company of Said Gutseriyev (Russian billionaire Mikhail Gutseriyev’s son).

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