Statement by Ambassador Katherine Tai Following the Congressional Vote on Russia and Belarus’ Permanent Normal Trade Relations Status

April 08, 2022

Over the last several weeks, President Biden has united our allies and partners to impose severe economic costs on Russia for its premeditated and unprovoked attack on Ukraine. The Biden Administration has initiated crippling sanctions on Russia’s financial, energy and military sectors and curtailed its access to certain technologies. As a result, the Russian economy has cratered and hundreds of companies have announced plans to leave the country.
Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted unanimously to cut off permanent normal trade relations with Russia and Belarus. Combined with a similar, overwhelming vote in the House of Representatives, this swift action shows our determination to isolate Russia from the global economy and multilateral institutions.  Additionally, Congress voted overwhelmingly to ban energy imports from Russia, which will complement the Executive Order President Biden signed last month and further restrict Russia’s economy.
I want to thank Senate Finance Committee Chairman Wyden and Ranking Member Crapo – as well as Ways & Means Chairman Richard Neal and Ranking Member Kevin Brady in the House of Representatives – for coming together to reach this agreement.
USTR will continue work with Congress and our trading partners as we build a broad coalition in opposition to Russia’s unjust actions.