Photo courtesy of Peter Nguyen.

Singapore to block certain Russian banks, financial transactions

The government is also donating US$100,000 for Ukranians’ humanitarian needs.

Singapore has joined the plethora of countries in imposing sanctions on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.

The country is blocking “certain Russian banks and financial transactions connected to Russia,” Singapore’s Foreign Affairs Minister Vivian Balakrishnan said in a Parliament speech. He added that specific details will be announced soon.

Singapore is also imposing export controls on items that can be used directly as weapons in Ukraine to inflict harm or to subjugate the Ukrainians.

The specific measures are being worked out and will be announced shortly.

The measures will likely hit businesses and individuals in Singapore but is necessary to impose them in order to underline the sovereignty of smaller nations, according to Balakrishnan.

“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a clear and gross violation of international norms and [sets] a completely unacceptable precedent,” he said.

He added that a world order where the stronger and bigger countries do whatever they want is a threat to the sovereignty of small states—which include Singapore.

“Small countries must avoid sacrificial pawns, vessel states, or cat’s paws; to be used by one side against the other,” he said.

Balakrishnan said that the war’s effects could already be felt, even in Singapore: from rising electricity and petrol prices.

The Singapore government will also contribute US$100,000 to the Red Cross for the purchase of humanitarian needs of Ukrainians, such as hygiene kits, family kits, and household kits.

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