The US has sanctioned 34 individuals and more than 120 legal entities from Russia and other countries. The US Treasury Department issued the equivalent list on Wednesday, April 12. It includes, among other things, firms affiliated with the Russian state corporation Rosatom.
JSC Rusatom Overseas, for example, is responsible for “marketing the line of non-energy solutions of Rosatom in the sphere of nuclear technologies to the international market,” including in the field of hydrogen energy, according to its website. Yevgeny Pakermanov, the president of Rusatom Overseas, was also targeted by the new US sanctions.
According to the Kommersant newspaper, the extent of Rusatom Overseas’ overseas activity is small: the company’s revenue in 2022 was 7 billion rubles (about USD 85 million), with a net profit of 1.2 billion rubles (about USD 15 million). In the spring of 2021, the firm announced a collaborative initiative with the French company Air Liquide to establish a hydrogen production plant on Sakhalin. However, Air Liquide withdrew from Russia on September 2, 2022, citing “the geopolitical context.” Rusatom Overseas’ website now states that the company is helping to build “the world’s highest centre for nuclear research and technology” in Bolivia.
In addition to Rusatom Overseas, other companies that produce uranium enrichment centrifuges, such as Kovrov Mechanical Plant and VPO Tochmash, are on the list maintained by the United States Treasury. These companies include the development of technologies for mounting, repairing, and dismantling nuclear reactor equipment by JSC Research and Design Institute of Mounting Technology – ATOMSTROY, which is also included on the list.
The EU is also considering sanctioning Russia’s nuclear industry
Rosatom was silent about anything about the US penalties. As per Kommersant, smaller restrictions won’t have a big effect on the actions of the state corporation until decisions are made to put direct sanctions on the corporation itself.
There was a possibility that sanctions targeting the nuclear industry in Russia might have been included in the ninth package of measures that the European Union enacted at the end of February, but this did not occur. The EU considered imposing sanctions on specific individuals at Rosatom rather than the entire state corporation to avoid a potential veto from Hungary but ultimately decided against doing so. This information was reported by the American news website Politico, which cited sources.