US expands list of sanctioned Russian firms

The construction of a bridge across the Kerch Strait to Crimea is seen from the outskirts of the Taman settlement in Krasnodar region, southern Russia © Andrew Osborn
The US Department of Commerce is expanding its blacklist of Russian companies and individuals over their alleged links to the Ukrainian conflict.

The list was published on the Federal Register’s website on Tuesday, and identifies “entities and other persons reasonably believed to be involved in, or that pose a significant risk of being or becoming involved in, activities that are contrary to the national security or foreign policy of the United States.”

READ MORE: Kremlin warns of retaliation after US expands sanctions list

The blacklist consists of 75 Russian companies and up to 37 individuals. Among the sanctioned companies are 11 Russian and international electronics firms including one of the largest Eastern European manufacturers of integrated circuits Angstrem Group, Foreign Economic Association, radio and microelectronics manufacturer Mikron.

Seven sanctioned companies are said to be directly involved in the construction of the 19 kilometer (11.8 miles) road and rail connection across the Kerch Strait, which connects the Black and the Azov Seas.

Last week, the US Treasury Department introduced sanctions related to the conflict in eastern Ukraine against 18 construction, transportation and defense entities operating in the Crimea, as well as dozens of Gazprom and Bank of Moscow subsidiaries. The list also included an additional 11 Crimean officials.

Gazprom said the new sanctions will not affect its business.

The US and EU imposed sanctions on Russia in 2014 after accusing Moscow of involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine and of annexing Crimea. The Kremlin has denied the accusations and responded with counter-measures, banning imports from the EU, US and others.