G7 Mulls Imposing Fresh Sanctions on Russia to Stop Ukraine Conflict | News on Russia-Ukraine War

The G7 summit in Hiroshima, Japan, is expected to increase pressure on Russia to end the conflict in Ukraine. The existing sanctions against Russia are among the toughest ever imposed on a major economy, but there is still considerable room for the G7 to enforce further restrictions. This includes broader oil and energy, non-energy trade sanctions, closing loopholes in these areas, and technology sanctions. The G7 member states will focus mainly on increasing the enforcement of existing sanctions, including cracking down on sanctions evasion involving third countries.

Despite predictions of economic collapse, the Russian economy has held up better than expected against the Western-led sanctions regime. Trade between Russia and G7 countries plummeted, but China, India, and Turkey recovered, with rising imports of Russian coal, oil, and gas filling much of that surplus. Some studies have implicated Western shipping companies in violating sanctions on Russia’s energy exports.

There are also signs of division among G7 members ahead of the summit. The G7 is reportedly considering a proposal to permanently shut down natural gas pipelines following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but European countries are hesitant to back such a move as they continue to rely on Russian gas.

The historical record of the effectiveness of sanctions in achieving change, not only in Russia but also in other underprivileged states such as North Korea and Cuba, has been “quite pessimistic.” Sanctions are most effective where a high degree of economic integration has already taken place or where economic cooperation is desired, which has been limited since 2014. The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, sought to prepare his country for success “step by step” into the long-running conflict in his State of the Union address in February.

While sanctions were already affecting Russia’s military operations, the G7 needed to step up its efforts to help Ukraine and undermine the Russian state. The sanctions had not been observed in a counterfactual world without sanctions, making it impossible to know exactly how sanctions affected Russia’s willingness to wage this and future wars. The direction of the impact is clear, however. This war is already a disaster for Russia and the Kremlin, and sooner or later it will turn into a disastrous defeat with the help of the West.

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