President Joe Biden announced that the US will ban Russian-affiliated ships from American ports, joining Canada and Europe in the latest step to pressure Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
s Biden explained:
“That means no ship, no ship that sails under the Russian flag or that is owned or operated by a Russian entity, will be allowed to dock in a United States port or access our shores
According to Reuters, in 2021 Russian vessels made about 1,800 visits, less than 3% of all traffic. In addition, people briefed on the matter said nearly 90% of that traffic was oil imports, which the US has previously banned.
Biden’s order also cited that “the policies and actions of the government of the Russian Federation to continue the premeditated, unjustified, unprovoked and brutal war against Ukraine.”
Specifically, the order authorizes the Homeland Security Department to issue rules “to regulate the anchorage and movement of Russian-affiliated vessels, and delegate to the secretary my authority to approve such rules and regulations”.
The order also aims to prevent Russian ships from entering the United States – even if they are reflagged at sea – and covers Russian-flagged, owned or operated ships.
As Reuters explains, the issue prompted an extensive Biden administration review to make sure the ban on Russian ships would not seriously impact U.S. supply chains. The order does not seek to ban the shipment of all Russian cargo.
In a recent development, on March 1, Canada closed its ports to Russian-owned ships and barred them from Canadian waters, while many European countries have also taken the same step including Bulgaria, Estonia and Italy.