The Russian oligarchs who may be hit by U.S. sanctions?

The list released in January 2018 reads like a who’s who of politically connected Russians in the country’s elite class. The idea is to ‘name-and-shame’ those suspected of benefiting from President Putin’s tenure as the U.S. works to isolate his government diplomatically and economically. The Treasury said the list was ‘based on objective criteria drawn from publicly available sources.’

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is one of many people close to President Putin who is on the Trump list

It includes Putin’s entire presidential administration, as listed on the Kremlin website, and the Russian Cabinet. The 96 named oligarchs on it are as the Washington Post states ‘a carbon copy of the top of the Forbes magazine’s Russian billionaires’ list’.

The list includes 114 senior political figures with close ties to President Putin, including his chief spokesman, Dimitry Peskov, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Prime Minister Dimitry Medvedev. Those among nearly 100 oligarchs named all have a net worth of $1 billion or more. They include the aluminum tycoon Oleg Deripaska, Chelsea football club owner Roman Abramovich and the media and tech magnate Alisher Usmanov.

Also on the list are top officials in Russia’s leading spy agencies, the FSB and GRU. The CEOs of major state-owned companies, including energy giant Rosneft and Sberbank. 

Some names on the list – such as Sergei Galitsky, founder of retail chain Magnit, and Arkady Volozh, founder and CEO of the search engine Yandex have raised eyebrows. Both have been praised as self-made men who built their successful businesses without any government support.