WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – The United States has extended the deadline for investors to divest from and wind down their business with Russia’s GAZ Group until March 7, the US Treasury Department said in a notice on its website on Thursday.
“All transactions and activities otherwise prohibited by the Ukraine Related Sanctions Regulations, 31 C.F.R. part 589, that are ordinarily incident and necessary to the maintenance or wind down of operations, contracts, or other agreements, including the importation of goods, services, or technology into the United States, involving GAZ Group or any other entity in which GAZ Group owns, directly or indirectly, a 50 percent or greater interest and that were in effect prior to April 6, 2018, are authorized through 12:01 a.m. eastern standard time, March 7, 2019,” the document said.
The announcement comes just one day after the Treasury Department notified the US Congress that it would lift sanctions on EN+ Group, Rusal and JSC EuroSib Energo after the three Russian companies agreed to undertake structural reforms to reduce the ownership of businessman Oleg Deripaska. That decision will go into effect after 30 days, unless the Congress seeks to block it.
GAZ Group is also part of Deripaska’s business empire. Russian officials have previously indicated that GAZ Group was also willing to take steps to be removed from the US blacklist.
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Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak said in October that Russian officials were involved in discussions about a possible foreign purchase of Deripaska’s stake in the company in order to save tens of thousands of jobs that could potentially be lost as a result of US sanctions.