Australia Sanctions Alumina Exports to Russia, Offers Humanitarian Visa to Ukrainians

Australia announced on Sunday that the country was banning alumina exports to Russia following its invasion of Ukraine and offering humanitarian visas to Ukrainians.

“The government has imposed an immediate ban on Australian exports of alumina and aluminum ores (including bauxite) to Russia overnight, which will limit its ability to produce aluminum – a key export for Russia,” said Prime Minister Scott Morrison and several other Australian ministers. said in a joint statement.

Ministers noted that Australia supplies almost 20% of Russia’s alumina needs.

Australia also announced it would offer Ukrainians temporary humanitarian visas, which would allow refugees to access Medicare, study and work. The ministers said that nearly 4,500 visas have been issued so far and more than 600 Ukrainians with these visas have already entered the country.

Ministers further announced defense assistance to Ukraine and humanitarian assistance, including $21 million for defense assistance to the Ukrainian Armed Forces and an additional $30 million in humanitarian assistance.

“Australia stands with the people of Ukraine and again calls on Russia to end its unprovoked, unjust and unlawful invasion of Ukraine,” the ministers said.

Other nations have also pledged support for Ukraine, including opening temporary pathways for Ukrainians to stay in their country during the invasion.

Canada announcement earlier this month that it would remove some normal visa requirements and allow Ukrainians to enter via a Canada-Ukraine Emergency Travel Authorization, allowing them to stay for at least two years.

In Canada’s announcement, it also said it would establish a pathway to permanent residency for Ukrainians who already had family who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

The Biden administration announced earlier this month that it would grant 18-month Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Ukrainians already in the United States.

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