What Happened: The U.S. Treasury Department notified the U.S. Congress on Dec. 19 that it will remove sanctions on Russia's Rusal, EN+ and ESE in 30 days. At the same time, the department said Oleg Deripaska, the Russian oligarch with key stakes in the entities, will remain on the U.S. sanctions list.
Why It Matters: The announcement comes after months of negotiations between the U.S. Treasury Department and Deripaska on reducing his stakes in the sanctioned companies and overhauling their respective boards of directors to lift sanctions.
Background: The United States imposed sanctions against Rusal in early April as part of a sanctions expansion under the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act. Because Rusal is the second-largest aluminum producer in the world, the move initially caused global aluminum prices to grow by double digits.
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- Why the U.S. Will Keep Russian Sanctions on Simmer, Not Boil (Aug. 27, 2018)
- U.S., Russia: New Sanctions Against Moscow Impede Efforts to Improve Relations (Aug. 9, 2018)