Dec 19, 2018 - World

Trump administration to lift sanctions on Russian companies tied to Oleg Deripaska

Oleg Deripaska

Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. Photo: Igor Russak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The Treasury Department announced Wednesday it would lift sanctions on three Russian companies tied to Oleg Deripaska, an oligarch who once employed President Trump's former campaign manager Paul Manafort, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The big picture: As part of the agreement, Deripaska — who remains under U.S. sanctions for allegations of extortion and illegal business practices — will reduce his ownership stake in the parent company of Rusal, the world's second largest aluminum producer. When Rusal was sanctioned by the U.S. in April 2018, it had a dramatic impact on global aluminum prices. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin explained in a statement that the U.S. had originally sanctioned the companies because of their ties to Deripaska, "not for the conduct of the companies themselves."

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