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The EU Sanctions Best Practice updated – main changes

On 24th March 2015, the Foreign Relations Counsellors Working Party , EU body dedicated to the development of best practices among Member States in implementation of restrictive measures, published an updated version of the document EU Best Practices for the effective implementation of restrictive measures, which amends the previous version published in 2008.

The update document contains non exhaustive and non binding recommendations which cover a number of issues relating to listing & de-listing on EU targeted sanctions measures, & national implementation of asset freezing measures.

As summarised by Maya Lester, the most significant amendments are:

  1. The addition of a section on de-listing from United Nations sanctions lists.
  2. Clarification of the tests for “ownership” or “control” of an entity and “making funds available indirectly”, mirroring the Guidelines on Implementation of Restrictive Measures published by the EU in 2013.
  3. An explanation of the non-liability & no claims clauses in a number of EU sanctions Regulations, which provide that no liability is incurred for damages caused by sanctioning a person in accordance with EU measures, or for breaching sanctions where it was not known or there was not reasonable cause to suspect that the action would infringe restrictive measures.
  4. A statement that, unless otherwise specified, sanctions measures annulled by the European court remain in force for the 2 month and 10 day time limit in which an appeal may be brought and for as long as an appeal is pending.
  5. Clarification of some of the grounds for exemptions to asset freezes (licences), and of the process for transfer of funds between EU and non-EU financial institutions where sanctions are involved.



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