For the first time, the EU has adopted in its 14th package of sanctions against Russia a measure targeting specific vessels contributing to Russia’s warfare against Ukraine, which are subject to a port access ban and ban on provision of services.

These vessels can be designated for various reasons such as the transport of military equipment for Russia, the transport of stolen Ukrainian grain, and support in the development of Russia’s energy sector, for instance through the transport of LNG components or transshipments of LNG.

This measure also targets tankers part of Putin’s dark fleet which circumvent the EU and price cap coalition’s caps. In this first round of listings, the EU has placed 27 vessels on this list.

EU foreign ministers adopted new punitive measures to crack down on Russia’s sanctions evasion. The 14th package of sanctions against Russia contains important new energy-related measures targeting liquified natural gas (LNG), and measures targeting vessels which support Russia’s war.

Moreover, a total of 116 additional listings of 69 individuals and 47 entities are subject to asset freezes, and in the case of individuals also to travel bans.

As regards LNG, the package prohibits all future investments in, and exports to, LNG projects under construction in Russia.

It will also prohibit, after a transition period of 9 months, the use of EU ports for the transshipment of Russian LNG. Moreover, the package prohibits the import of Russian LNG into specific terminals which are not connected to the EU gas pipeline network.

Specifically, the EU will forbid reloading services of Russian LNG in EU territory for the purpose of transshipment operations to third countries. This covers both ship-to-ship transfers and ship-to-shore transfers, as well as re-loading operations, and does not affect import but only re-export to third countries via the EU.

Josep Borrell, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said: “Our sanctions have already significantly weakened the Russian economy and prevented Putin from accomplishing his plans to destroy Ukraine, although he still continues the illegal aggression targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure.

“The 14th package of sanctions demonstrates our unity in supporting Ukraine and seeking to limit Russia’s criminal activities against Ukrainians, including efforts to circumvent EU measures.”