March 26, 2023

The lavish lifestyles of President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle were hit Friday as the UK sanctions daughters of Putin and his Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Katerina Vladimirovna Tikhonova and Maria Vladimirovna Vorontsova, the daughters of President Putin, and Yekaterina Sergeyevna Vinokurova, daughter of Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, will be subject to travel bans and asset freezes.

The UK has coordinated these sanctions with the US, in another show of global unity on action against Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine. This follows the UK’s sanctioning of Polina Kovaleva, Sergey Lavrov’s step-daughter on the 25th of March. These designations come into force as new analysis shows the devastating impact of the sanctions imposed on Russia’s economy in recent weeks.

Sanctions imposed by the UK and its international partners are having deep and damaging consequences for Putin’s ability to wage war, with £275 billion – 60% of Russian foreign currency reserves – currently frozen.

The analysis shows Russia is heading for the deepest recession since the collapse of the Soviet Union, as estimates for Russia’s GDP growth in 2022 now range from -8.5 per cent to -15 per cent. Longer-term, expert predictions suggest a continuing economic hit, with GDP growth depressed as the country is cut off from Western technology. The Kremlin faces tough choices at home as a result of its aggression abroad. Sanctions imposed in response to Putin’s abhorrent actions have triggered rapid inflation, with average consumer prices up 8.67 per cent since the invasion. By freezing the assets and limiting the travel of Putin’s allies, the UK Government is sealing off reservoirs of cash funding the conflict, while also making sure those who have benefited from Putin’s rule feel the consequences.

Oligarchs and other wealthy Russians are amongst those hit hardest by the sanctions, which have drastically limited their access to luxury consumer goods and access to international markets. The defence industry is also being targeted by Western sanctions, with the UK already having led the way in sanctioning Rostec, United Aircraft Corporation, United Shipbuilding Corporation and the world’s biggest main battle tank manufacturer, Uralvagonzavod.

Marvelous Ogidi

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