Australia has imposed further sanctions on Russia and has banned exports of alumina, bauxite, and aluminium ores as part of a measure to increase sanctions on Moscow.
“Russia relies on Australia for nearly 20 percent of its alumina needs,” said the Australian government in a joint statement from several ministries. The joint statement also states the move is aimed at limiting Russia’s capacity to produce aluminium, which is a critical export for Russia.
“The Government will work closely with exporters and peak bodies that will be affected by the ban to find new and expand existing markets,” reads the joint statement.
Last week, Australia imposed sanctions on two Russian businessmen with links to its mining industry, one of them being billionaire Oleg Deripaska who holds stakes in QAL.
Mining giant Rio Tinto owns a 80% stake in Queensland Alumina Ltd (QAL) in a joint venture with Russia’s Rusal International PJSC, the world’s second-largest aluminum producer.
So far, Australia has imposed 476 sanctions on 443 individuals, including businessmen close to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and 33 entities, including most of Russia’s banking sector and all entities responsible for the country’s sovereign debt, the statement said.
Australia plans to donate at least 70,000 tonnes of thermal coal to Ukraine to meet its energy needs.
“The Australian Government has worked with the Australian coal industry to source supplies,” reads the statement.
The Australian government has also pledged additional military equipment and humanitarian aid for Ukraine.