UK and EU ban sales of luxury goods to Russia

The UK has slammed fresh tariffs on some Russian imports as well as a ban on exports of some high-end luxury goods to Russia.

UK’s move clashes with the European Union’s (EU) agreement to ban the sale of luxury consumer goods to that are worth more than €300 (£253, $330) to Russia.

In the UK, a new 35% tariff will be imposed on £900m ($1.2bn) of Russian goods, including vodka, fur, fertilisers, tyres and cement, on top of existing tariffs.

Meanwhile restricted items from the EU will include perfumes, handbags, beer, champagne, caviar, suits, and cigars, among other consumer goods.

The purchase of some Russian steel and iron finished products will also be banned from the EU, as well as pearls, diamonds, gold and precious stones.

Britain is also denying Russia and Belarus access to Most Favoured Nation tariff for hundreds of their exports, which will remove key benefits of World Trade Organisation (WTO) membership.

The EU will also ban the sale of luxury cars, boats and planes valued at more than €50,000, which would apply to models from manufacturers such as Audi, BMW and Ferrari.

Motorcycles worth more than €5,000 will also be banned as part of the fresh sanctions, alongside parts and accessories.

It comes as several European carmakers have already voluntarily suspended sales to Russia since the start of the conflict.

However, there are exemptions included. The new package does not target transactions needed for purchasing or transporting Russian fossil fuels nor are titanium, aluminium, copper, nickel, palladium and iron ore subject to the restrictions.

The UK is also set to phase out the import of Russian oil and oil products by the end of 2022, following similar moves by the US.

The government said the transition period will give the market, businesses and supply chains more than enough time to replace Russian imports, which make up 8% of UK demand.

Britain is less reliant on Russian fossil fuels than many European countries. Beyond Russia, the vast majority of UK imports come from partners such as the US, Netherlands and the Gulf.

The ban is not set to apply to Russian gas.


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