Japan will ban the shipment to Russia of precious metals, especially gold, in response to its invasion of Ukraine, the Ministry of Finance said.
The ban on Russia-bound precious metal reflects Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s resolve to impose further sanctions against the country, pledged at last week’s meeting of leaders from the Group of Seven (G7) advanced nations.
It follows a prohibition on the export of high-end cars and other luxury goods to Russia.
The partial ban on Russia-bound automotive items, which account for more than half of Japan’s exports to Russia, came after Prime Minister Fumio Kishida made a commitment to place more sanctions on Russia at a G7 summit last week.
The new items on the export control list, to take effect from April 5, span 19 categories, from cars worth more than 6 million yen ($48,630) to jewellery, watches, cosmetics, alcoholic beverages and art priced at more than 40,000 yen.
Russia-bound exports of boat engines worth more than 1.3 million yen, motorcycles worth over 600,000 yen and grand pianos priced at more than 200,000 yen will also be banned, the ministry said.
Japan’s bans, first announced by Kishida on March 16, followed steps by the US and European countries to impose sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.
“In cooperation with the US and the EU, Japan joins the sanction against Russian oligarchs and the ruling class,” a ministry official told a media briefing.
The inclusion of luxury cars on the list “may have a certain impact” on Japanese exports, but not a sizeable one, the official said, adding that Japanese cars sold to Russia are mostly models that sell for less than 6 million yen.
Japan’s move comes after the US and Britain took steps to curtail transactions in gold with Russia.
- Reuters, with additional editing by George Russell