European businesses shouldn’t be held hostage by US sanctions against Russia – investor
Thomas said he does not understand why the European economy should be impacted. "Sanctions are the sole decision of the United States, it’s not the decision of Europe and even the UN,” he said, adding “it’s inacceptable” and “we should get out of this.”
According to him, Washington’s sanctions should not be of any concern for European companies. However, while those companies have branches in the US they are also impacted by sanctions. Washington can penalize any company working in the US if it’s doing business in a sanctioned country.
The businessmen suggested that Europe could also introduce counter-sanctions against the US in Europe. And if Russia retaliates against the United States it will be an adequate response, he said. “In this silly game the US understands that the sanctions system is not a good one because the balance of the forces is the best way to negotiate.”
France is a very strong country and it should take the lead, by speaking out against sanctions. “It should tell the whole of Europe to decrease sanctions step by step or at once which is not so easy because economically we are linked to the US and other parts of the world.”
Thomas stressed that Europe should have its own position and follow its interests in rebalancing relations with the US on one side, and Russia on the other. "If you conduct a poll in France, I’m sure more than 70 percent of people will say they don’t understand why the US has to decide for them.”
He pointed to the fact that numerous French companies, businessmen, and the French president are attending the St. Petersburg forum. That is because French people want to work, they want employment, Thomas explained.
“President [Emmanuel]Macron can’t go against the will of his people like President Vladimir Putin can’t go against the will of Russia. I do understand that the US is acting very cleverly while intervening on behalf of its interests, which is good for them, and I don’t criticize it. What I am criticizing is that we are going against our own interest. That’s not acceptable.”
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