Do Economic Sanctions Work?

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The US and European nations are prepared to punish Russia economically if it invades Ukraine. But the impact of these measures is disputed.

  • The US and other Western countries are preparing a massive package of economic sanctions against Russia, were it to invade Ukraine. The measures would focus on finance, energy and technology.
  • Punitive measures like these have become increasingly popular in conflicts with rogue states or countries aggressively engaging in war. In most cases the purpose is to avoid military engagement.
  • The impact of economic sanctions is heavily debated however. Resistance is strong in export oriented countries depending on barrier-free trade. Businesses are afraid to suffer themselves.
  • Furthermore there is an academic discussion among economists over whether sanctions are effective. Current research suggests that the impact is modest at best.
  • Whether sanctions work as a foreign policy tool depends in large part on the goal. The conflict with Russia may well become a further test case.
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4 articles on this topic

Business Standard

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