The world's seven richest nations will announce a ban on Russian gold imports, US President Joe Biden said on Sunday, as Moscow’s war on Ukraine continues.
Leaders of the world's seven wealthiest nations will gather in Germany for talks on additional sanctions against Russia and the medium- and long-term reconstruction of Ukraine.
Confirming earlier reports of an imminent ban, Biden said: "The United States has imposed unprecedented costs on (Russian President) Putin to deny him the revenue he needs to fund his war against Ukraine."
"Together, the G7 will announce that we will ban the import of Russian gold, a major export that rakes in tens of billions of dollars for Russia," he added.
With its estimated 331 tons in 2020, Russia ranked second in terms of global gold output making up 9% of the world's total, according to SP Global data.
The UK government also confirmed on Sunday that a ban will be imposed on Russian gold imports, saying new exports of Russian gold will no longer be allowed to enter the UK, Canada, US and Japan.
"London is a major global gold trading hub and UK sanctions, which will be the first of their kind to be implemented against Russia anywhere in the world, will have a huge impact on Putin’s ability to raise funds," the government said in a statement.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the measures will directly hit Russian oligarchs "and strike at the heart of Putin’s war machine."
"We need to starve the Putin regime of its funding. The UK and our allies are doing just that," he added.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak also said that with the ban on new Russian-origin gold, over £13.5 billion ($16.6 billion) of the UK imports from Russia will be covered by restrictions.
"Given London’s role at the heart of the global gold trade, this shows the UK will take tough steps to stop the Russian war machine," he said.
According to the UK government statement, the gold import ban, which will come into force shortly, will apply to newly mined or refined gold.
It will not affect Russian-origin gold previously exported from Russia.