Dr Neil Hudson MP sat on a special legislation committee to finetune laws which will place new sanctions on the Russian economy, stopping funds being funnelled back to Putin's illegal war in Ukraine.
The legislation - which amends the Sanctions Act 2018 – contains trade and financial measures, co-ordinated with the UK’s international partners to increase the pressure on Putin over his brutal and illegal war against Ukraine.
Dr Neil Hudson MP said:
“As we approach two years since Russian tanks rolled across the Ukrainian border, our resolve to defend democracy and liberty cannot falter.
"It is vital that the measures we are enacting alongside our valued international partners will further squeeze the Russian economy - restricting Putin's grim war machine and reaffirming our unwavering support for the people of Ukraine."
Specifically, it includes measures to bans the export of further products that could be used by the Russian military or industry, including electronics and machine part; it band the imports of Russian metals, diamonds and luxury goods; and imposes new obligations for those under the Russia financial sanctions regime to further report assets.
On top of this the laws being devised would prohibit UK credit and financial institutions from processing payments that have travelled to, from, or via sanctioned institutions in any currency.
Alongside tough penalties for those have been sanctioned, Government will help support UK entities divesting in their Russian interests and buy out Russian investors from UK entities – provided the funds go to a frozen account.
It follows commitments made by the Prime Minister at the last G7 Summit in Japan to increase the coordinated set of measures being imposed by the international economic community on Putin’s regime.
To date, the UK has sanctioned almost 2,000 individuals and entities meaning more than £20 billion-worth of UK-Russia trade is now under sanction, resulting in a 94% fall in Russian imports to the UK before the war. As such, Russia is increasingly isolated from western markets, services and supply chains. Key Russian sectors are faltering and economic projections look bleak.
Government’s broader strategy to reaffirm the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of our Ukrainian allies includes diplomatic pressure, other trade sanctions, economic and financial sanctions and designations.
Dr Hudson is a passionate advocate of British support for Ukraine and has stood up in the Commons Chamber to support restoring the Black Sea Grain Deal; the Homes for Ukraine scheme and combat Russian aggression while securing domestic resilience.
Recently he shone a light on the work of local charity champions who have delivered a fifth ambulance to Ukraine alongside a 4X4 vehicle and three paramedic motorcycles. You can read more on this here.
During the Committee meeting, Dr Neil Hudson MP said:
“I thank the Minister for outlining and clarifying these important sanctions measures, which show our resolute support for the people of Ukraine. Does he agree that it is so welcome that the Opposition and the Government are completely united on this? It sends a very strong, public statement to the world that we remain resolutely in support of our friends in Ukraine.”
Leo Docherty, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, replied:
“I am grateful for my hon. Friend’s intervention. The year 2024 will be one in which our collective resolve is tested. It is therefore pleasing that across this House and this country, we are resolutely in support of our brave Ukrainian friends and clear in our international messaging, and clear to our international partners that we will support them for as long as it takes.”
The UK is one of the largest aid donors to Ukraine, having committed over £7 billion in military assistance and £4.6 billion in non-military assistance since February 2022. UK support for Ukraine now totals almost £12 billion.
Most recently, in January 2024 the Prime Minister confirmed that the UK will provide £2.5 billion in military aid to Ukraine in 2024/25, which is an increase of £200 million on the previous two years. The funding will help to leverage the best of UK military expertise and defence production to ensure Ukraine’s victory on the battlefield, including in critical areas like long-range missiles, air defence, artillery ammunition and maritime security. UK support to Ukraine has also included armoured vehicles, anti-tank missiles, air defence systems, and multiple launch rocket systems.
£347 million of UK support comprises humanitarian grant support, making us the third largest bilateral humanitarian donor. The UK's vital humanitarian aid is helping to save lives and protect the vulnerable both inside Ukraine and in neighbouring countries, and is taken from our Official Development Assistance (ODA) budget, meaning none of it will be repaid.
In terms of economic assistance, UK support includes, among other things, £10 million for the Energy Support Fund to assist the Government of Ukraine with essential repairs to energy infrastructure and £41 million of guaranteed lending to Ukraine’s energy transmission operator. This is also taken from the ODA budget. In addition, the UK has provided guarantees of up to $1.5 billion in multilateral development bank lending to Ukraine, and most recently pledging further guarantees of up to $3 billion through the World Bank between 2024 and 2027. In the event of a default by Ukraine on the planned World Bank loan, UK guarantees would be eligible to be counted as ODA.