US imposes fresh sanctions against Russia

US imposes fresh sanctions against Russia

WASHINGTON - The US Treasury Department has announced tighter financial sanctions on Russian banks and energy companies because of what Washington calls Moscow's continued interference in Ukraine .

The US Treasury on Friday cut the length of maturity of bonds issued by Russia's top financial institutions and oil and gas companies that US individuals and institutions are allowed to trade, a move aimed at making it harder for those companies to raise long-term funding.

For Russian banks and other financial institutions listed for sanctions, only debt of 14 days or less issued after November 28 can be traded. Previously the allowed maturity was 30 days.

For listed oil and gas firms, the maturity of permitted new debt was cut to 60 days from 90 days.

The move hits major Russian banks like Eximbank, Sberbank, Vnesheconombank and VTB Bank, and energy giants including Gazprom, Lukoil, and Transneft.

The new order also reiterated the ban in trading new equity issued by the sanctioned firms.

Similar debt and equity-related sanctions were first implemented in 2014 by American and European governments, making access to dollar and euro financing increasingly limited for Russian companies.

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