Evrofinance Access to MOEX FX Markets Restricted after US Sanctions

Evrofinance Mosnarbank will still retain access to MOEX markets but its FX operations will be restricted.

Following the imposition of US sanctions against Evrofinance Mosnarbank, the Russian bank will still retain access to Moscow Exchange (MOEX) markets. However, it will have restrictions on its foreign exchange operations, according to a report from Reuters, which cites MOEX.

Evrofinance Mosnarbank is one of the largest commercial banks in Russia and is jointly owned by Russian and Venezuelan state-owned companies.  On Monday, the United States Department of the Treasury published a statement, announcing that it had added Evrofinance Mosnarbank to its sanctioning list, as the bank was “willing to finance the Petro.”

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Following on from this the bank released a statement to its clients, dated from Wednesday, which said that from the 11th of March onwards, Evrofinance would not be processing US dollar payments, because of its inclusion on the sanctions list, the news outlet reported.

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Before March 11, the Russian-Venezuelan lender was an active player on MOEX’s FX market. In February, the bank was the 18th largest player of dollar-rouble swaps.

US Treasury Imposes Sanctions on Evrofinance Mosnarbank over Petro Cryptocurrency

The Russian commercial bank came under the US Treasury’s radar as part of its continued efforts to escalate the use of sanctions against the illegitimate regime of former President Nicolas Maduro.

According to the statement from the US Treasury: “When the failed Venezuelan cryptocurrency called the Petro, launched in 2018, Evrofinance emerged as the primary international financial institution willing to finance the Petro. Early investors in the Petro were invited to buy the cryptocurrency by wiring funds to a Venezuelan government account at Evrofinance.”

Commenting on the sanctions at the time, Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin further explained: “The illegitimate Maduro regime has profited off of the suffering of the Venezuelan people. This action demonstrates that the United States will take action against foreign financial institutions that sustain the illegitimate Maduro regime and contribute to the economic collapse and humanitarian crisis plaguing the people of Venezuela.” 

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