U.S. business groups warn against Russia sanctions bill

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

A bill to punish Russian officials for alleged human rights abuses would badly damage U.S.-Russian ties and hurt U.S. exports, business groups said Tuesday, two days before a key congressional panel is expected to vote on the measure.

... Bill Reinsch, president of the National Foreign Trade Council, whose members include major U.S. exporters such as Boeing, Microsoft and Caterpillar, told reporters Tuesday that the Magnitsky legislation was “seriously flawed.”

He said the bill would make it even more difficult to get Russia’s cooperation on a range of issues, including Iran’s nuclear ambitions and Syria’s crackdown on dissent.

U.S. companies also fear that they will lose sales because Moscow will retaliate by turning to other suppliers, Reinsch said.

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