VTB loan first casualty as sanctions kill prized market

By Dan Alderson
31 Jul 2014

Few things were clear this week about the European Union’s stance on sanctioning Russian syndicated loans, even after the EU published the legal acts in its official journal late on Thursday. But most bankers were emphatic that the market is shut — at least for western banks. This stance will remain, as the result of fear of fines if not clarity of rules, they said, with the immediate casualty being VTB’s prospective $1.5bn-$2bn loan, which was said to be close to the line last week.

Ahead of the EU publishing the legal acts in its official journal, there was growing talk among bankers that syndicated loans would be excluded from Europe’s sanctions against Russia. But even though the resulting document has been published, the wording has split opinions. One ...

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