In May, about three tonnes of gold was imported from Great Britain into Switzerland under the name Russia Origin. Gold produced in Russian refineries is banned from trading in Switzerland after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The precious metal is worth CHF 194 million.
It is not known who introduced Russian gold to Switzerland. For legal reasons, the Federal Office of Customs and Border Protection (BAZG) wrote in a statement on Friday that it could not provide any information on gold importers. However, BAZG is reviewing related imports. Various media outlets have been reporting on this for the past few days.
The import of gold from Russia to Switzerland was not banned under the war-related activities in Ukraine. However, gold exports to Russia have been banned.
Also, after March 7, 2022, all bars made by Russian refineries will no longer be traded in Switzerland. This does not apply to bars previously made by Russian refineries. According to BAZG, there are basically no trade restrictions on other forms of gold – such as jewelry or gold coins.
It is estimated that five Swiss gold refineries in Ticino and western Switzerland process 70 percent of the gold worldwide (e.g. by the WWF). They are one of the largest gold refineries in the world. Switzerland is also a major center for international gold trade.
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