EU mulls ban on buying Russian bank stocks, bonds-EU diplomat

BRUSSELS, July 24 Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:22am EDT

BRUSSELS, July 24 (Reuters) - Ambassadors of European Union countries will discuss on Thursday a European Commission proposal to ban purchases of new shares or bonds issued by Russian banks in the EU as part of new sanctions on Moscow over its role in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, an EU diplomat said.

The Commission proposal, sent to European capitals last night, does not however include a ban on purchases of Russian government debt, the diplomat said.

The measure was signalled already on Tuesday by Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski after a meeting of EU foreign ministers who discussed sharper sanctions against Moscow after the downing of the Malaysian passenger plane over eastern Ukraine by Russian-backed separatists last week.

Sikorski said on Tuesday that the ministers discussed "sanctions regarding arms exports, access to our capital markets, including the possibility of refinancing debt in the public and private sector and Russian access to our technology including the energy sector." (Reporting By Jan Strupczewski; editing by Adrian Croft)