Canada slaps sanctions on Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich

The latest round of measures hits 32 companies and five individuals

Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich is subject to widespread sanctions. Reuters

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has wrapped a week-long trip to Europe by announcing another round of sanctions on Russian oligarchs and companies.

The latest measures are aimed at billionaire Roman Abramovich and four senior Russian officials and business tycoons with close ties to President Vladimir Putin.

The move comes a day after the UK sanctioned Mr Abramovich, who owns English Premier League club Chelsea FC.

“The sanctions on Russian officials and oligarchs like Abramovich are directed at them so that they cannot profit or benefit from economic activities in Canada or the hard work of Canadians working in companies that they have investments in,” Mr Trudeau told reporters in Warsaw.

Mr Abramovich owns a 28.6 per cent stake in Evraz PLC, which operates metal plants in western Canada. The company, which has its headquarters in the UK, employs about 2,000 people in Canada. Mr Trudeau assured Canadians their jobs would not be in jeopardy.

“We are confident that this will not impact the hard-working Canadians that are doing good work in companies like that one [Evaz],” he said.

As of Tuesday, Ottawa had sanctioned 136 Russian entities and 542 individuals. Canada is working in tandem with its European allies hoping to impose maximum pressure on Mr Putin as Russian forces continue their unprovoked assault on Ukraine.

“We need to be absolutely firm and co-ordinated in our response,” Mr Trudeau said.

“We need to make sure that regardless of Putin’s state of mind or motivations, that we demonstrate that the democracies of Europe and North America and indeed countries around the world will not accept this violation of fundamental principles of international law of country's sovereignty.”

More than 2 million Ukrainians have fled to neighbouring countries since the invasion began more than two weeks ago. Mr Trudeau said Canada had not ruled out a possible airlift for refugees.

The prime minister made it clear “there is no win” for Mr Putin in this war.

Updated: March 11, 2022, 3:36 PM