The EU has access to more and more oligarch money. Now a dispute breaks out as to whether the assets can flow to Ukraine as compensation.
Russian billionaires have lost access to nearly $10 billion worth of luxury yachts, real estate and other assets since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began. According to information from the dpa news agency, this is based on figures from the EU Commission. On April 8, the volume was 6.7 billion euros.
The EU Commission wants to present a legislative proposal this Wednesday that should make it possible to confiscate frozen Russian money. This money could then be used to rebuild Ukraine. EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen emphasized on Tuesday: “We should turn every stone for this – if possible also Russian assets that we have frozen.”
A total of almost 30 billion euros frozen
Since the start of the attack on Ukraine, the EU has put a number of Russian oligarchs on the sanctions list because they are accused of having close ties with the Kremlin and also profiting from them for business. At the beginning of March, an EU special unit was set up to ensure better cooperation between EU countries and to track down the assets of the oligarchs.
A good month later, the first balance was drawn: the EU states had frozen assets of 29.5 billion euros by then – around 6.7 billion euros came from the assets of oligarchs. Added to this were the frozen assets of the Russian central bank.
Finance Minister Christian Lindner ( FDP ) said that Germany was open to a debate about using confiscated Russian assets to rebuild Ukraine. However, one must distinguish between state funds – such as the central bank – and private funds. “In our constitution there are guarantees for private assets,” said Lindner.