|"I see no Light at the End of the Tunnel " by COSIMO|
Amidst all the political infighting reportedly going on within Malta's ruling Labour Party, apparently nobody is paying attention to fast-moving events in Europe. There is a very good chance that the first major war on the continent since 1945 will short begin, should Russian troops cross the border and invade the Ukraine. Most military experts agree that armed conflict, which Russian leader Vladimir Putin reportedly plans to use to roll back any expansion of NATO into Eastern Europe, and eliminate any American influence there, could begin at any time.
Maltese leaders obviously are NOT reading the American press, because if they were, they would have already seen that amongst the sanctions President Biden and his advisors have promised will occur upon invasion shall include, but are not limited to:
1. Blocking all access of Russian banks, and the country's government, to the SWIFT system, used for the international transfer of funds.
2. Denying Russia any and all access to the American financial structure, as is presently in place against Iran, DPRK (North Korea), and Syria.
3. Placing massive OFAC sanctions upon Putin personally, his close associates and PEPs, and a broad sector of the Russian economy.
These acts, which we understand were contemplated in 2014, when Russia occupied the Crimea, but never implemented when Russia made promises of a broader shooting war in Ukraine, and elsewhere, should such severe actions occur, will have knock-on effects felt globally, including within Malta.
Should war commence, and the sanctions ensue, Malta will find itself in a dangerous position; Russian clients will seek the assistance of the individuals and companies who have secreted, transferred and laundered funds from Russia through the US for decades, to recover their holdings within America and Canada, evade the sanctions in international transactions, and conduct business in US Dollars, which must flow through the New York banking centre. One can expect greedy Maltese businessmen and banks to dive into such a potentially lucrative event, feet first, without regard for the possible adverse consequences.
Expect the American Department of the Treasury, and the FBI to be on those Maltese players zealously and forthwith, and local financial institutions may end up as collateral damage when their access to the American banking structure is terminated, due to their facilitation of sanctioned Russian entities and individuals. Pray for Peace, Malta, for war in Russia could end up killing the Golden Goose of offshore finance in your country, once and for all.
In short, Malta may be an unintended consequence of an American campaign to stop sanctions evasion by Russia.