Further exemptions to EU sanctions against Russia are historic mistake

Statement following the publication of the 12th package of EU sanctions against Russia, including measures on the import of Russian steel semi-finished products

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EU Member States have made a historic mistake by granting further exemptions to imports of highly carbon-intensive Russian semi-finished steel products. This decision fuels a perverse system that not only weakens EU sanctions against Russia but also runs counter EU climate targets. The opportunistic interests of a handful of steel processing enterprises, taken up by a few Member States with a veto right, are undermining the objectives of the sanctions, where steel plays a strategic role not only in the overall Russian economy but also directly in the Russian military machine engaged in the war of aggression against Ukraine,” said Axel Eggert, Director General of the European Steel Association (EUROFER).

“Currently, Russian slabs are 26% cheaper than slabs from other third countries. It is clear why certain steel processing companies are determined to maintain the current bonanza they unfairly take advantage of,” he added, concluding: "If Ukrainian re-rollers operating in the EU can diversify their sources of imports of semis away from Russia, why not the few other importers?".

Published: 19 December 2023

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The European Steel Association (EUROFER)
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