- OFAC Publishes Fact Sheet on Joint U.S.-U.K. Russia-Related Sanctions: OFAC and its U.K. counterpart, His Majesty’s Treasury’s Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI), on June 28 published a joint Humanitarian Assistance and Food Security Fact Sheet to provide additional clarity on U.S. and UK Russia-related sanctions and the relevant authorizations, exceptions, and public guidance. The Fact Sheet, among other things, clarifies if the sanctions provide exceptions to non-government organizations or international organizations providing humanitarian assistance; if financial institutions are allowed to process transactions related to the exportation of agricultural commodities, medicine, or medical devices; and, if financial institutions are allowed to process transactions involving Joint Stock Company Russian Agricultural Bank (Russian Agricultural Bank) related to the exportation of agricultural commodities related to Russia. Read more.
- OFAC Reminder: File 2023 Annual Report of Blocked Property by Sept. 30: OFAC on July 3 issued a reminder to holders of blocked property to provide OFAC with a comprehensive list of all blocked property held as of June 30, 2023 by Sept. 30. The term blocked property only applies to property that is blocked pursuant to OFAC regulations. Persons filing the 2023 Annual Report of Blocked Property are required to use spreadsheet form TD-F 90-22.50. Completed forms should be filed through the OFAC Reporting System or sent to [email protected]. Read OFAC’s guidance. Read more.
- OFAC to Retire PIP, DEL, and SDALL.ZIP File Formats of Sanctions List in August: OFAC on July 6 announced that it will retire the PIP, DEL, and SDALL.ZIP sanctions list file formats on Aug. 15, 2023. OFAC will continue to offer for public download the XML, CSV, and FF file formats, the ZIP files SDN_XML and SDN Advanced, and PDF versions for OFAC’s sanctions list(s). Read more.
OFAC took sanctions action in the Russia and Venezuela programs:
- OFAC Sanctions Companies Funding Wagner: OFAC on June 27 sanctioned four companies and one individual connected to the Russian military group PMC Wagner (Wagner Group) and its founder and owner Yevgeniy Prigozhin, previously sanctioned by the United States, the European Union, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The Wagner Group is responsible for criminal acts around the world that threaten the safety, security and human rights of nations, as well as exploiting natural resources. OFAC designated Central African Republic-based mining company, Midas Ressources SARLU; CAR-based company, Diamville SAU; Dubai-based Industrial Resources General Trading and Russia-based Limited Liability Company. OFAC also designated Russian national, Andrey Nikolayevich Ivanov, an executive in the Wagner Group. Read more.
- OFAC Issues Guidance on Africa Gold Advisory: In related news, OFAC published guidance on Africa Gold Advisory to inform the public about an increasing concern related to the role of illicit actors in the gold trade. Malign actors, including the Wagner Group continue to exploit vulnerabilities in the gold supply chain across sub-Saharan Africa. OFAC encourages U.S. businesses to consider responsible investment in all aspects of the sector in Africa: mining, trading, refining, manufacturing, and retail of key end products. Without adequate due diligence and appropriate mitigating measures, an industry participant may inadvertently contribute to one or more of these risks, including conflict and terror financing, money laundering activities, sanctions evasion, human rights and labor rights abuses and environmental degradation. Read the advisory.
- OFAC Issues Venezuela-Related General License 40B: OFAC on July 10 issued Venezuela-related General License 40B, authorizing certain transactions involving the exportation or reexportation of liquefied petroleum gas to Venezuela through July 10, 2024. Additionally, OFAC is adding regulations to implement Executive Order 14078 of July 19, 2022, “Bolstering Efforts To Bring Hostages and Wrongfully Detained United States Nationals Home.” Read more.