G7 Countries Considering Near-Total Ban on Exports to Russia

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Representatives pose for a group photo during the meeting of the Group of Seven (G7) foreign and development ministers at Lancaster House in London, Britain, on May 4, 2021. (Andrew Parsons/No 10 Downing Street/Handout via Xinhua)
Representatives pose for a group photo during the meeting of the Group of Seven (G7) foreign and development ministers at Lancaster House in London, Britain, on May 4, 2021. (Andrew Parsons/No 10 Downing Street/Handout via Xinhua)

The Group of Seven (G7) nations are considering a near-total ban on exports to Russia, the Kyodo news agency reported on Friday, citing sources in the Japanese government.

Earlier on Friday, Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yasutoshi Nishimura refrained from answering a question about a complete ban on exports to Russia, which was allegedly being discussed before the G7 Summit in Hiroshima in May, saying that “this question involves diplomatic negotiations.”

Bloomberg reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter, that the United States and other G7 allies of Ukraine were weighing a possible move to ban most exports to Russia.

The strategy would flip the current sanctions regime around to ban all exports unless they are given a special exemption, according to the report. Items such as medicines and agricultural products, including food, would likely be given exemptions under the scheme. G7 officials could endorse the move at their next summit in Japan in May, and they hope to convince member states of the European Union to join the effort, according to the report.

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