Nicola Sturgeon has sought “urgent advice” on the “maximum possible action” the Scottish Government can take against individuals and entities identified as having close links with Vladimir Putin’s regime.
The First Minister has responded to concerns that Russian oligarchs with ties to Scotland may continue to receive public money.
Russian steel magnate Vladimir Lisin owns the 3000 acre estate of Aberuchill Castle near Crieff in Perthshire which has received large sums of cash through Scotland’s EU Common Agricultural Policy.
“Vladimir Lisin is one of the richest men in Russia, and he’s been on the US Treasury Department’s ‘Putin list’ of known Kremlin associates since 2018,” said Scottish Greens MSP Ross Greer.
“That estate has received just under £700,000 of agricultural subsidies between 2016 and 2019.”
At First Minister’s Questions, Greer asked if the Government would urgently review any relevant payment systems to ensure no member of the Russian elite or Kremlin associate would be in receipt of public money in Scotland.
The First Minister said she had already sought urgent advice on the “maximum possible action” the Scottish Government could take within its powers against individuals and entities identified as having close links with the Russian regime, whether or not they are currently on the UK sanctions list.
“Options that will be examined include, but are not limited to ending support from the public purse and seizing or seizing assets in Scotland where that is possible,” she said.
The Scottish Government has written to the business community urging companies to cut ties with Russia over the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Finance secretary Kate Forbes said “any price paid here is significantly less than that being paid by the people of Ukraine”.