The invasion of Ukraine by Russia is having a huge financial impact on the Russian Oligarchs. There are about 40 Oligarchs in Russia. Unfortunately, not all Russian billionaires belong to the Russian oligarchy.
In protest of Moscow’s illegal, indefensible war against Ukraine, countries have started to issue sanctions against Russian Oligarchs. Their assets are being frozen and they also face travel ban. Russian Oligarchs are being sanctioned by the EU, UK, US, Australia, etc.
Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said Australia was working in close cooperation with international partners to increase sanctions pressure on oligarchs close to Russian President Vladimir Putin over the invasion of Ukraine.
“Australia has now added two billionaires with links to business interests in Australia, Oleg Deripaska and Viktor Vekselberg,”
The measures are in addition to curbs on 41 oligarchs and immediate family members who already face targeted financial sanctions and travel bans, she said.
The West is targeting powerful Russian billionaires thought to be close to Putin by freezing their assets to try and exert pressure on Putin to end the war in Ukraine.
Billionaire Mikhail Fridman says sanctioning oligarchs like him have no influence on Putin, and it would be suicide to challenge him on Ukraine. He said he has an allowance of $3,300 a month and needed UK government permission to spend money.
Fridman resigned from the board of Alfa-Bank one day after the EU sanctioned him. Although, he is one of the cofounders of LetterOne, he stepped down from being a member of the board of directors.
According to Fridman, “To say anything to Putin against the war, for anybody, would be kind of suicide.”
“If the people who are in charge in the EU believe that because of sanctions, I could approach Mr. Putin and tell him to stop the war, and it will work, then I’m afraid we’re all in big trouble. That means those who are making this decision understand nothing about how Russia works. And that’s dangerous for the future.”
According to Bloomberg, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Fridman’s wealth dropped from $14 billion to $10 billion.
Fridman estimated that his living allowance, due to UK sanctions, is around £2,500 ($3,300) per month.
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