As Putin-led Russia continues to attack Ukraine, the U.S. also continues to do all that they can to support Ukraine and aid them in winning the war, with the ultimate goal of defeating Putin. Just last week, the Biden administration contributed a weaponry package of over $1 billion to Ukraine, but now the strategy has shifted— rather than assisting Ukraine with only additional support, Russia must be weakened in itself. The allied G7 nations, including France, The United States, The United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada, are all officially banning the import of gold from Russia, shutting down one of their major sources of income.
President Biden tweeted that the U.S. will immediately ban Russian gold imports, saying that the U.S. must “deny [Putin] the revenue he needs to fund his war against Ukraine,” given that gold is one of Russia’s primary exports, bringing in tens of billions of dollars annually. Russia has been named as the second-largest producer of gold worldwide, with China just barely taking the lead. With seven major world powers cutting off Russia from a major source of funding, one can only hope that Russia’s economy is sufficiently weakened as a result.
The remaining question is how quickly this gold ban will genuinely have an effect on Russia’s finances, and if this G7 decision comes a little too late, considering that Russia’s first attacks on Ukraine in 2022 began over four months ago. Biden banned the importation of Russian fuel— Russia’s largest financial export— back in March, which Americans have suffered from via increased gas prices nationwide. However, despite the efforts of Biden and other G7 leaders to shut down the Russian economy completely, the worldwide increased demand for fuel has allowed Russia to upcharge other nations, canceling out any possible loss that they may have suffered due to the G7 oil bans.
Luckily, the ban on gold will not have the same widespread impact on Americans, considering that purchasing gold jewelry is not exactly a necessity, unlike gasoline. Based on the general unimportance of gold within one’s day-to-day life, the importation ban will most likely not result in Russia surging gold prices and making more money, but rather losing billions of dollars and ultimately decreasing their military funding.