Russian companies are facing tougher loan restrictions from western banks as sanctions against the country start to bite.
Banks are insisting that new loans to Russian businesses that are not directly targeted by sanctions carry clauses forcing immediate repayment or default if sanctions affect those companies.
“If someone sneezes towards your company, the loan becomes immediately due and payable,” said the chief financial officer of a large Russian group.
Loan deals have almost dried up in the past two months since the Ukraine crisis erupted and Moscow annexed Crimea. US and Japanese banks have taken a more cautious approach in the region with Wells Fargo telling the Financial Times yesterday that it had stopped doing new business in Russia.
But some European banks are trying to continue working with the country despite the threat of more sanctions.
According to people familiar with the matter, bankers insisted on rewording the terms of a deal with Metalloinvest, the metals company owned by Alisher Usmanov, Russia’s richest man, just days before it announced a $1bn financing.
European banks, including Deutsche Bank, ING, Société Générale and BNP Paribas, made up the bulk of the deal, announced as the US and Europe unveiled the first sanctions against Russia in March.
参与这笔交易的主要是欧洲银行，包括德意志银行(Deutsche Bank)、荷兰国际集团(ING)、法国兴业银行(Société Générale)和法国巴黎银行(BNP Paribas)。这笔交易在今年3月美国和欧洲出台首轮针对俄罗斯的制裁之际公布。