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The Foreign Financial Sanction System of the U.S.: Characteristics (No.235, 2021)


By He Yang, Research Institute of Finance, DRC

Research Report, No.235, 2021 (Total 6300) 2021-8-31

Abstract: Since the end of World War II, the U.S., backed by its strong economic and financial capacity, frequently exerted economic and financial sanctions on other countries and gradually formed a complete legal framework and organizational system. Its foreign economic and financial sanctions are mainly directed by the State Department, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Commerce and the sanctioned bodies include individuals, financial and non-financial entities, governments and government departments. The sanction measures can be divided into six major categories such as aviation embargoes, trade controls, restrictions on financing and financial transactions, assets freezing and bans on using U.S. dollar settlement system. Since the 1990s, due to the phasing-out effects of US external economic sanctions and the criticism aroused by the international community, US financial sanctions have gradually become its main means in its external economic and financial sanctions in the context of financial globalization. Generally speaking, the US foreign economic and financial sanctions are characterized by a dynamic adjustment in terms of the intensity with a combination of various means to exert pressures corresponded by strategic threats and tactical strikes. In recent years, there are some new changes in its foreign economic and financial sanctions including the strategic objectives, operation mode, sanction scope and sanction focuses, all of which merit our attention.

Keywords: economic and financial sanctions, legal framework and tool system, implementation path