Russian oligarch Mikhail Fridman says it feels like he’s under house arrest due to sanctions levied against him by the EU and the United Kingdom as punishment for Russian President Vladimir Putin invading Ukraine, according to insider.
“I can’t even take anyone out to a restaurant. I have to eat at home and I am practically under house arrest,” Fridman told Spanish newspaper El Pais.
The Russian billionaire was sanctioned by the European Union on February 28, two weeks later the U.K sanctioned him and his last remaining back account was frozen. Fridman, a banker and investor is now worth an estimated $10 billion. His net worth fell by four billion since Putin invaded Ukraine.
He told Bloomberg News earlier this month that he has to apply to the UK government to spend any money in the country and that he receives roughly £2,500 ($3,275) a month if the application is approved.
Now he says that amount is not enough.
“Authorities in Great Britain have to assign me a certain amount so I can take taxis and buy food, but it will be a very limited amount if you look at the cost of living in London,” he told El Pais.
Fridman believes the sanctions levied against him are “groundless and unfair” and it is “idiotic” to think that Putin will change his course of action because Russian oligarchs are being punished.
“Sanctions against private entrepreneurs make no sense, because the majority of them have built their business through talent, effort and personal qualifications,” he said. “Things won’t go any better for the West if it forces many brilliant and interesting entrepreneurs to go to Russia, instead of integrating them more and trying to get them to take a stand, even if it is obvious that private business has zero influence over Putin.”