Japan approves ban on luxury car exports to Russia

Japan on Tuesday approved a ban on exports of luxury cars and other items to Russia as part of economic sanctions related to its invasion of Ukraine.

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s cabinet revised a relevant ordinance to implement the embargo on April 5 which will also cover jewelry and works of art.

This decision aims to increase pressure on the oligarchs who financially support Russian President Vladimir Putin. The United States and member countries of the European Union have already taken similar measures.

Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Koichi Hagiuda speaks to reporters after a Cabinet meeting on March 29, 2022, at the parliament in Tokyo. (Kyodo)

“We will work with the international community, including the Group of Seven countries, to enforce tough sanctions,” Koichi Hagiuda, minister of economy, trade and industry, told a news conference. .

Cars make up a large chunk of shipments to Russia from Japan, which totaled 627.8 billion yen ($5 billion) in 2020, according to government data.

Japan imposed a similar ban on luxury goods exports to North Korea in 2006 after Pyongyang announced it had conducted a nuclear test. Japan has since completely banned imports and exports to the country.

Russia’s aggression against Ukraine has already been met with a series of sanctions, including a freeze of Russian central bank assets, the banning of major Russian financial institutions from a major international payment system and the imposition of export bans and controls.

Joining the United States and European countries, Japan also moved to strip Russia of its “most favored nation” status, which gave Moscow the best possible trade terms on key products under EU rules. World organization of commerce.

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