Switzerland boosts gold imports from Russia despite sanctions – media

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According to Swiss customs data, trade volumes between Russia and Switzerland have increased since Ukraine-related sanctions aimed at isolating Moscow were imposed last week.

According to the outlet, Swiss exports, dominated by pharmaceutical products, have increased by 19%, while Russian imports have increased by 54% since the beginning of the year.

The significant increase in Russian exports was reportedly due to an increase in gold shipments, which are subject to specific sanctions in Switzerland. According to the outlet, the country joined EU restrictions prohibiting trade in Russian gold and gold products in August, which had little impact on imports of the metal from the sanctioned country.

In November, 6.4 tons of gold worth CHF344 million ($370 million) arrived from Russia, according to Swiss customs data. However, the buyer’s identity remained unknown. According to the report, much of the gold entered Switzerland, a major global hub for precious metal processing, via third countries and allegedly from Dubai.

Meanwhile, the Swiss Association of Precious Metal Manufacturers and Dealers informed the paper that it had no dealings with Russian gold.

The EU adopted its seventh package of Ukraine-related sanctions against Russia in July, which included a ban on the “direct or indirect purchase, import, or transfer of gold and gold jewelry” originating in Russia, as well as a ban on Russian exports to the bloc. Exports of gold items processed in a third country are also restricted.