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United Nations Security Council Sanctions: Assets freeze measures

Article 41 of the United Nations Charter authorises the Security Council to take enforcement measures not involving the use of force in order to give effect to its decisions. These measures often take the form of sanctions. UN Security Council sanctions are binding on all UN member States, including New Zealand, and are implemented in New Zealand law by regulations made under the United Nations Act 1946. All persons and entities in New Zealand, and in many cases New Zealand citizens and companies overseas, must comply with regulations implementing Security Council sanctions. The range of sanctions imposed by the Security Council has included comprehensive economic and trade sanctions as well as more targeted measures such as arms embargoes, travel bans, and financial restrictions. Financial restrictions, otherwise known as an “assets freeze” are one of the most commonly used sanctions imposed by the United Nations Security Council.

Currently UN member States are required to implement asset freeze measures on UN Security Council designated individuals or entities from the Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Somalia, and Sudan. To date there have not been any designations of individuals or entities from Lebanon and Eritrea. The UN Security Council has also imposed assets freezes on individuals and entities associated with Al Qaida and the Taliban, which are implemented in New Zealand via the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002. A list of terrorist designated individuals and entities associated with Al Qaida and the Taliban can be found on the New Zealand Police website.

The following assets freeze measures are implemented in New Zealand via the following UN sanctions regulations, promulgated pursuant to the UN Act 1946:

The regulations prohibit dealings in assets, money, or securities of, or derived from property of, designated persons or entities, and prohibit sending funds to designated persons or entities. As provided by section 3 of the United Nations Act 1946, the maximum penalty for a breach of the regulations is six months imprisonment or a fine of $10,000 for an individual; and a fine of $100,000 for a corporation.

Links to updated lists of designated individuals and entities subject to asset freeze measures are available on the following United Nations Security Council Sanctions Committee webpages:

If you have a sanctions related enquiry, including guidance on possible matches to designated entities and individuals, please contact:

Sanctions Officer
Legal Division
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Ph: +64 4 439 8032
E-mail: sanctions@mfat.govt.nz

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Page last updated: Tuesday, 15 May 2012 10:08 NZST