Lithuania Freezes Russian and Belarusian Assets Worth €103 Million
In Lithuania, access to over €103 million in assets has been frozen as a result of international sanctions imposed on Russia and Belarus in connection with their aggression against Ukraine. This information was disclosed by Lithuania's Financial Crime Investigation Service.
According to the agency, under the financial sanctions, the funds of nine legal entities in Lithuania were blocked. The total amount of frozen assets on their accounts exceeds €69.505 million and $810,000.
As a consequence of restrictive measures related to the situation in Belarus and Belarus' involvement in Russia's aggression against Ukraine, funds have currently been frozen on the accounts of six legal entities and one individual for a total sum of €23.71 million and $7.68 million.
Additionally, access to over €1.33 million, $1.583 million, and 215,000 rubles has been suspended in connection with transactions linked to sanctioned individuals.
Experts from Lithuania's Financial Crime Investigation Service point out a trend towards evading sanctions, particularly through attempts to import sanctioned goods into the aggressor country.
It's worth noting that in December 2022, Lithuania froze Russian and Belarusian assets amounting to over €85 million, and since then, this amount has grown by nearly €20 million.
In June, the European Union concluded that it couldn't legally confiscate frozen Russian assets within its territory. Instead, attention was focused on seizing profits derived from the use of these assets. The EU has been exploring options for utilizing over €200 billion in frozen assets of the Russian central bank, with plans to redirect them to support Ukraine. Many of these funds are held by settlement giant Euroclear Ltd., which contributed almost €750 million to the first quarter of this year.
Regarding the proposal from the European Commission regarding the use of frozen Russian state assets in the EU to support Ukraine, it is not expected to be published until September.
Since Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the EU has frozen over €200 billion in assets of the Russian central bank, with a significant portion held in Belgium. The EU has also frozen funds held privately.