The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, has welcomed the news that the Government of the United States has removed Super Yacht, Alfa Nero, from its sanctions list.
The news was delivered to the Prime Minister this morning by Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to the United States who has been leading the effort in Washington to have the Alfa Nero removed from the List of the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) of the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
Ambassador Sanders explained that because the Alfa Nero is now lawfully owned by the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, through the Antigua and Barbuda Port Authority, the superyacht is no longer linked to the sanctioned Russian Oligarch, Anrey Yurev, and his family, and, therefore it is not regarded as ‘blocked property’.
Sir Ronald added that “Effective today, US persons are permitted to engage in any lawful transactions, regarding the Alfa Nero, and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda can proceed with an auction to sell the vessel”.
The Ambassador explained that the only prohibition on the Antigua and Barbuda Government, is that it cannot deal with any individual or entity which is sanctioned by OFAC. “What this means is that the Antigua and Barbuda government cannot sell the vessel to a sanctioned person or entity or to any entity or person linked to them”. Sir Ronald further advised that, “since the Antigua and Barbuda law, governing matters related to the Alf Nero specifically prohibits the sale of the vessel to a sanctioned person or entity, the Governments of the US and Antigua and Barbuda are in full agreement on this matter.”
Ambassador Sanders thanked the US Treasury for its full cooperation in resolving this matter, adding that “the diplomatic outreach at several levels contributed greatly to the short span of time in getting the sanctions removed from the vessel, something which usually takes years.”
He said that, in all this, the guidance and support of Prime Minister Gaston Browne was a key factor.