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UK suppliers export over $100mn worth of military technology to Russia last year - Times

Moscow receives the most important weapons components, such as chips and drones, through third countries or directly from the United Kingdom. 

UK suppliers export over $100mn worth of military technology to Russia last year - Times
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British suppliers exported more than $100 million worth of critical components for military technology to Russia in the first 10 months of last year. This was reported by The Times.

The export list includes semiconductors and drones.

Moscow will receive the equipment through third parties, including Chinese, Hong Kong and Turkish companies. About $15 million worth of goods came to Russia directly from UK warehouses.

This figure is down significantly from 2022, when British technology exports to Russia totalled almost $770 million. However, almost two years after Moscow's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, goods from the UK are still being supplied to the Russian army.

Censor, citing the publication, notes that despite the fact that many components are not subject to sanctions, they are important for Russian weapons and cannot be produced in Russia. These are primarily semiconductor and electronic components. Last year, Russia also got hold of UK-made computer numerical control (CNC) machines worth about $1.5 million.

The newspaper emphasises that high-precision devices are particularly useful for defence production and pose a major problem for Ukraine's allies. 

Who in the UK sends technology to Russia

The Times writes that British semiconductor manufacturer FTDI manufactured the chips found in an abandoned Russian tank in Brovary, Kyiv Region, in March 2022. Last year, Russia imported about $1.5 million worth of FTDI components, up from $500,000 in 2022.

The British company Mykines, registered in Enfield, north London, has organised sales of about $1.2 billion worth of electronics in Russia since the invasion of Ukraine. According to the KSE Institute at the Kyiv School of Economics, in the first 10 months of 2023, the company exported $37.3 million worth of critical components to Russia.

Machinery Trading & Service, a UK-based supplier of parts for the mining and construction industries, supplied $10.7 million worth of equipment to Russia, making it the second largest supplier in the UK. It is likely that the business was transferred to a Ukrainian woman, Iryna Voronina, who lives in Moldova, just a few months after the outbreak of full-scale war.

"Despite the positive shift in the reduction of direct trade with Russia, the overall figure remains significant - $112 million. Indirect trade by UK companies increased by 78% in monetary terms in the tenth month of 2023 compared to the same period in 2022," said Olena Bilousova, Senior Research Fellow at KSE Institute.

  • In January, Bloomberg reported that Russia managed to import one billion dollars worth of chips made in the US and EU last year.
  • More than half of the imported semiconductors and integrated circuits in the first nine months of 2023 were manufactured by American and European companies.
  • These include products from Intel, Advanced Micro Devices and Analog Devices, as well as European brands Infineon Technologies AG, STMicroelectronics NV and NXP Semiconductors NV.
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