US official fears US sanctions will lose validity

U.S. financial sanctions may lose their effectiveness over time, Assistant Deputy Head of the National Nuclear Safety Administration David Hoagland stated.

“There is a very real risk that the tool that we have been increasingly using to influence the behavior of our opponents and sometimes even friends may not be as effective as before, after five or twenty years”, – Hoagland said at a conference on nuclear deterrence in Washington, speaking about the leverage of the US on opponents in the field of nuclear non-proliferation.

According to him, sanctions are the most frequently used instrument of pressure on opponents, their effectiveness is primarily due to the fact that more than 90% of all transactions in the world somehow involve the American financial system.

“All these tools are closely tied to the power and influence of the US dollar. It will not go anywhere in the foreseeable future. But we use it to punish everything from hacking to using weapons of mass destruction. And our opponents really don’t like it”, – the official said .

According to him, the administration draws such a conclusion on the basis of data that countries that have fallen under sanctions are trying to get out of the sphere of influence of the dollar. He drew attention to trends in this area in the trade of Russia and China. According to him, in 2014 only 2% of trade was in RMB, in 2017 – already 9%, similarly in rubles, an increase was recorded from 9% to 15%. In addition, the Bank of China has created special accounts for settlements with Pakistan, bypassing the US financial system, Hoagland added.

“Russia tried to replace SWIFT and did not fail in this. These are trends that we should beware of”, – he said.