Russia pleads with India for help avoiding financial black list, warning oil and weapons deals are at risk, report says

Narendra Modi and Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.Sergey Bobylev/Reuters

  • Russia could become black listed by the Financial Action Task Force in June.

  • To avoid this, Moscow is pressuring India to help thwart the blacklisting effort, Bloomberg reported.

  • Russia has told India that key energy and weapons deals would be at risk.

Russia is asking for India’s support to avoid getting on a black list that would further isolate Moscow from global finance, Bloomberg reported.

The pressure comes as the Financial Action Task Force — an intergovernmental group focused on combating money laundering and terrorist financing — prepares for a June meeting, during which members could implement restrictions on Russia.

Though its invasion of Ukraine had already made Russia the world’s most heavily sanctioned country, an FATF blacklisting would put Moscow in the same category as North Korea, Iran, and Myanmar.

If Russia is added to the black list, FATF members, banks, investment firms, and payment-processors must perform additional due diligence and could even enact countermeasures, according to Bloomberg.

Because Russia was suspended from FATF in February, it’s urging other countries like India to help thwart the blacklisting effort.

The Kremlin has warned India that defense, energy, and transportation deals between the two countries would be at risk under the designation.

They include weapons exports, cooperation between oil firms Rosneft and Nayara Energy Limited, and the development of a railway corridor. Russia is India’s top arm supplier and has emerged as a major oil supplier in the last year.

Russia has also said that even being added on the FATF’s “gray list” — a less severe measure — would still threaten deals.

Moscow believes that India has “special credibility” within the FATF that should be used, but has also turned to other governments for similar support, sources told Bloomberg. Meanwhile, Ukraine has championed the black listing, but is not a member itself.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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