US Threats to Tighten Sanctions on Russia Nothing But PR - US Businessman

© Sputnik / Alexei Danichev / Go to the mediabankOpening of 2015 St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF)
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The US will not tighten economic sanctions against Russia despite claims by US officials, head of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Russian Federation Alexis Rodzianko told RIA Novosti.

"These threats, I believe that they are some sort of PR: if the situation deteriorates [in Ukraine], [US-Russia relations] will deteriorate as well. It seems to be an attempt to send the situation back on track. But I have an impression that neither Europe nor the United States has an appetite with regard to [imposing] additional sanctions in the current situation. If it does not change seriously, no, I do not expect this," RIA Novosti quoted Rodzianko as saying on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg forum.

Director of the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) John Smith said earlier that the United States is prepared to heighten economic pressure on Russia if conditions in Ukraine continue to deteriorate. Smith described future economic sanctions as measures "to incentivize Russia to comply with the parameters of Minsk."

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Moscow has repeatedly denied western allegations of Russian involvement in the Ukrainian conflict.

He noted that he did not know how events would develop in Ukraine, "but if there is peace, I hope that some kind of decision about a better future for Ukraine will be agreed on, these issues [sanctions against Russia] will likely be removed."

Commenting on the prospects for investment in Russia, Rodzianko said that "all businessmen, including American, always assess the risks, weigh them."

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And now, "interest appeared as assets in Russia have become cheaper due to the fall of the [Russian currency] ruble's rate" despite the unfavorable conditions.

"Prospects are good in Russia — they have been so and they continue to be so," he noted.

He expressed hope that Russia would take necessary steps to improve the investment climate.

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