Sanctions have been a popular geopolitical tool for decades – most notably targeting the Soviet and the Iranian regimes. One might argue, they have been largely successful in the past, at least as far as the economic and ensuing political impact on those regimes. Currently, North Korea is subject to the strictest sanctions imposed by the US, UN and other countries, including Japan. Iran and Russia also face considerable US sanctions. The US sanctions can have the broadest reach as they could apply to US persons (“primary sanctions”) as well as those lacking any US nexus (“secondary sanctions”). They also have the toughest consequences, with penalties ranging in billions of dollars, particularly for the financial sector. Under the Trump presidency, sanctions seem to become an even more popular geopolitical tool as the US President has broad authority over enactment and enforcement of US sanctions.
We will survey current US sanctions regimes targeting Russia, Iran and North Korea, covering both legal and practical elements. Alexander will then share his extensive experience (and a few anecdotes) in assisting Japanese and other multinational clients in handling sanctions concerns. The discussion will finish with offering a forecast about potential future sanctions developments, with a disclaimer that sanctions largely depend on geopolitical developments, which are difficult to predict. Also, unpredictability has often been a key tendency for President Trump. However, one conclusion seems certain – sanctions will continue to play a significant role in this increasingly volatile world.
Senior Associate, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer
Alexander Dmitrenko is a Senior Associate at in the Tokyo office of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, a leading UK-based law firm. Alexander specializes in compliance matters, including white-collar defense and investigations, with a particular emphasis on the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, and leads Freshfields’ sanctions practice in Japan. Alexander has represented Japanese and other multinational clients in compliance matters and complex international disputes in various industries, including energy, telecommunications, trading, transportation, retail and construction. He also has an extensive experience in both litigations and cross-border transactions involving Russia, Ukraine and other CIS and Eastern European jurisdictions.
Alexander is qualified in the Russian Federation, New York State and as a solicitor of England & Wales. He is also registered as Gaikokuho-Jimu-Bengoshi with the Daini Tokyo Bar Association. Prior to joining Freshfields, Alexander worked as senior legal counsel at a Sojitz Corporation in Tokyo and as an associate at Debevoise & Plimpton in NYC. He speaks English, French, Japanese, Russian and Ukrainian.
Alexander will speak in his personal capacity, not on behalf of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer.