Former UK PM Blair Says Russia Sanctions Will Have Impact

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair believes the new economic sanctions against Russia for its aggression against Ukraine will have an effect, but said Russian President Vladimir Putin needs to know the U.S. and Europe mean business.
“The important thing is to try and make sure we engineer a situation in which you can have a peaceful and a diplomatic solution to this crisis, but it won’t happen unless everyone knows there is very tough action that will follow if the situation is destabilized in the east of Ukraine,” he told CNBC’s “Street Signs.”
On Monday, the United States imposed sanctions against seven Russian government officials and 17 companies linked to Putin.
The European Union also enacted new penalties against Russia, adding 15 more officials to its sanctions list.

Blair believes that despite the divisions within Europe, in the end the Continent will stand with the U.S. to take “a strong and determined line” against Putin.
Europe is more vulnerable to tougher sanctions that would hit the energy sector in Russia, since a large amount of its gas supply comes from Russia.
“I think what you’ll find increasingly is that Europe looks for ways of releasing itself from that dependence,” Blair said. “And even if short term that is difficult, I think the long-term implications for Russia are serious if Europe really sets about releasing itself from that dependence on Russian energy.”

via CNBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza