Only a dozen kilometers from the EU’s eastern border, the Russian army is committing barbaric actions during its invasion of ukraine.
It is bombing and launching missiles and killing innocent people.
At the same time, the entire world is witnessing the determined and brave resistance by the Ukrainian army and population as Russian forces unleash their assault on kiev and other Ukrainian cities.
We are resolved to continue imposing massive costs on Russia.
Costs that will further isolate Russia from the international financial system and our economies.
In coordination with president Biden, president Macron, bundes chanceler Schultz and prime minister Draghi as well as prime minister Trudeau and prime minister Johnson, we considered a significant tightening of our international response.
The european union and its partners are working to criple Putin’s ability to finance his war machine.
I will now propose to EU leaders the following measures:
First we commit to ensuring that a certain number of Russian banks are removed from swift.
This will ensure that these banks are disconnected from the international financial system and harm the ability to operate globally. SWIFT is the world’s dominant global interbank payment system.
Cutting banks off will stop them from conducting most of their financial transactions worldwide and effectively block Russian exports and imports.
Second we will stop putin from using his war chest. We will paralyze the assets of russia’s central bank.
This will freeze its transactions and it will make it impossible for the central bank to liquidate assets.
And finally we will work to prohibit russian oligarchs from using their financial assets on our markets.
All of these measures will significantly harm putin’s ability to finance his work and they will have a severely eroding impact on his economy.
Putin embarked on a path aiming to destroy Ukraine, but what he is also doing in fact is destroying the future of his own country.