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Belgian Finance Minister Warns of Unpredictable Fallout From Seizing Russia’s Frozen Assets in EU

© / gafferaКупюры и монеты евро
Купюры и монеты евро - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.06.2024
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Seizing Russia’s frozen assets in the European Union will lead to unpredictable consequences, and it is necessary to "share the risks" when it comes to providing a loan to Ukraine, Belgian Finance Minister Vincent Van Peteghem said on Friday.
Belgium holds the presidency of the Council of the EU until the end of the month. This country's jurisdiction also hosts the Euroclear depository, which holds most of the Russian frozen assets.
"Two things are of crucial important for our country — not to touch the assets themselves, as changing their ownership can have unpredictable consequences financially and legally. The second is sharing the risk — this is a very important issue in the creation of this tool, a key point in the whole discussion," the minister told reporters.
US dollars - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.06.2024
G7 Countries Could Lose $83 Billion If Russia's Assets Confiscated
After the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the EU and G7 countries froze nearly half of Russia's foreign currency reserves, approximately 300 billion euros. More than 200 billion euros are held in the EU, primarily in accounts at Belgium's Euroclear — one of the largest settlement and clearing systems in the world.
The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs described the freezing of Russian assets in Europe as theft, noting that the EU is targeting not only private funds but also Russia’s state assets. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated that Russia would respond if the frozen Russian assets in the West were confiscated. According to him, Russia also has the option of not returning the funds that Western countries hold in Russia.
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