Russia seizes assets of Deutsche Bank and UniCredit

Documents showed that a Russian court ruled to confiscate the assets of Deutsche Bank and UniCredit in Russia.

European banks have largely exited Russia after Moscow launched its attack on Kiev in 2022.

Documents dated May 16 showed that a St. Petersburg court ruled in favor of confiscating 239 million euros ($260 million) from Deutsche Bank.

On the same day, it ordered the confiscation of assets worth about 463 million euros ($504 million) belonging to the Italian bank UniCredit.

Both decisions were issued in response to a request from RusKhimAlians, which was planning to build a large gas processing and liquefaction plant in cooperation with the German company Linde, which withdrew from the project due to the Russian military attack.

RusKhimAlians has filed a lawsuit against UniCredit and Deutsche Bank – both guarantors of the project.

UniCredit Bank was one of the European banks most exposed to Russia when Moscow began its 2022 campaign in Ukraine, with a large local subsidiary operating in the country.

Initial discussions about a sale began last year, but talks did not advance.

CEO Andrea Orcel said UniCredit wanted to leave Russia, but said awarding a three-billion-euro operation was not a good way to respect the spirit of Western sanctions on Moscow over the war.

However, UniCredit Bank has gradually reduced its exposure to Russia and was able to increase its capital-to-risk-weighted assets ratio to 16% from 15% last year.

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