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Russian bunkering firm Profinet blacklisted under U.S. sanctions

17 Aug 2018

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Thursday designated Russia-based Profinet Pte Ltd. (Profinet) and its Director General, Russian national Vasili Aleksandrovich Kolchanov being involved in facilitating illicit shipments on behalf of North Korea.

Profinet is a Russian port service agency that provides loading, bunkering, supplying, and departure arrangements for vessels calling at the Russian ports of Nakhodka, Vostochny, Vladivostok, and Slavyanka, according to OFAC.

The company has provided port services on at least six separate occasions to DPRK-flagged vessels, including the sanctioned vessels CHON MYONG 1 and RYE SONG GANG 1

“Profinet continued to offer its bunkering services to DPRK-flagged vessels even after its employees knew of oil-related sanctions on North Korea,” it says.

“Kolchanov was personally involved in North Korea-related deals and interacted directly with North Korean representatives in Russia.”

Due to the development, any property or interests in property of the designated persons in the possession or control of U.S. persons or within the United States must be blocked, and U.S. persons generally are prohibited from dealing with any of the designated persons.

“Treasury will continue to implement existing sanctions on North Korea, and will take action to block and designate companies, ports, and vessels that facilitate illicit shipments and provide revenue streams to the DPRK,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. 

“The tactics that these entities based in China, Singapore, and Russia are using to attempt to evade sanctions are prohibited under U.S. law, and all facets of the shipping industry have a responsibility to abide by them or expose themselves to serious risks. 

“Consequences for violating these sanctions will remain in place until we have achieved the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea.”

Related: Singapore oil trading, bunkering firm added to US sanctions list
Related: UN Security Council: 22 shipping firms, 27 vessels blacklisted

Published: 17 August, 2018

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