U.S. Treasury’s Adeyemo says new Russia sanctions order puts bigger burden on banks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden’s new executive order strengthening U.S. sanctions against Russia will put new pressure on banks to ensure that their services are not being used to aid Russia’s efforts to circumvent sanctions, U.S. Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo said on Friday.

Adeyemo said in an interview on CNBC that most major financial institutions are adhering to U.S. sanctions aimed at preventing Russia from acquiring materials needed for its war effort. But the new executive order due to be signed on Friday allows the Treasury to target banks in countries like China, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and other countries that may be willingly or unwittingly helping Russia evade sanctions, Adeyemo said.

“What this tool says is that if you’re a financial institution, you need to take steps to make sure that you are not being used” by Russian front companies to evade sanctions.

(Reporting by David Lawder; Editing by Toby Chopra)