On Feb 28, Canada imposed new sanctions on Russian diamonds in response to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.
The sanctions prohibit Canadian companies and individuals from importing or dealing with diamonds from Russia, with limited exceptions for existing contracts and humanitarian purposes. This move is part of a coordinated effort by Western countries to pressure Russia to de-escalate tensions with Ukraine and respect international law. Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marc Garneau, emphasized that the sanctions were necessary in response to Russia’s violations of international law and its continued aggression against Ukraine.
The diamond industry is an important part of Russia’s economy, but the new sanctions are not expected to have a significant impact on Canada’s relatively small import diamond industry. The new sanctions on Russian diamonds join a growing list of measures imposed by Canada and other countries in response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine, including travel bans, asset freezes, and other economic sanctions. The situation in Ukraine remains a major concern for the international community, and efforts to find a peaceful resolution are ongoing. It remains to be seen how Russia will respond to the new sanctions, but the move is likely to further escalate tensions between Canada and Russia.
Russia is one of the world’s largest producers of diamonds and has a significant diamond industry. According to the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme, which tracks the trade of rough diamonds globally, Russia produced approximately 43 million carats of rough diamonds in 2020, making it the world’s largest producer of diamonds by volume. The diamond industry is an important part of Russia’s economy, accounting for a significant portion of its exports and providing employment for many people.
As for Canada’s diamond imports from Russia, the exact amount is not publicly available. However, Canada is a relatively small importer of diamonds, with the vast majority of its diamond imports coming from other countries such as Botswana, India, and South Africa. It is worth noting that the new sanctions do not just target diamond imports from Russia, but also prohibit Canadian companies and individuals from dealing with diamonds originating from Russia, regardless of where they were imported from.
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