Due to the EU sanctions, Finland has arrested a large amount of Russian property, including real estate such as seaside villas, industrial raw materials, more than a dozen yachts, and over 1,000 freight train cars.
It is specified that Finnish authorities currently hold frozen assets worth more than 80 million euros due to punitive sanctions imposed on Russia, according to the estimations of the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper. The property in question is owned by Russian individuals and entities who are subject to EU sanctions that overall target over 1,000 individuals and 80 entities.
Frozen real estate include the property of the Rotenberg family, which formerly held major ownership stakes in the Finnish Jokerit ice hockey team that played in the Russia-based KHL League and the Helsinki Arena. Among others, an eight-million-euro seaside villa in the resort town of Hanko in southern Finland, owned by Boris Rotenberg, an industrial tycoon who has held a Finnish passport since 2002, has been arrested.
Regarding luxury items, a total of 21 Russian-owned yachts have been barred from leaving Finland. In addition, large deliveries of raw materials have been seized – up to 44 million euros’ worth of iron ore pellets are being held in the Kokkola port area in Finland, as the EU banned imports of all iron and steel products from Russia and Belarus in March. Regarding commodities, some 1.4 million euros worth of acetic acid were also frozen.
Furthermore, Finland’s National Enforcement Authority has seized more than 1,000 Russian freight train cars. It estimates that the value of the wagons and their contents may be in the tens of millions of euros. The carriages are said to be stored in secret places in railway yards “to avoid tampering or vandalism”, as claimed by the Commercial Director of Finnish railway operator VR Eljas Koistinen. The confiscated carriages take up about 20 kilometres of track.
For his part, Russia’s President, Vladimir Putin, had repeatedly stressed that the policy of containing and weakening Russia was a long-term strategy of the West. At the same time, he emphasized that the crippling sanctions dealt a serious blow to the entire global economy, to the point of upending the West’s global dominance both politically and economically.