EU enforces ban on motorcycles being exported to Russia over Ukraine War

All motorcycles with a value in excess of €5,000 are banned from being exported to Russia in the latest wave of sanctions from the European Union

KTM 1290 Super Adventure R

The European Union has announced it will be enforcing a series of trade restrictions to Russia following its invasion of neighbouring Ukraine in a move that includes a ban on exporting ‘luxury’ motorcycles to the nation.

Russia - acting under the orders of President Vladimir Putin - launched a military invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, targeting key locations close to the border, including the capital city Kyiv.

In the three weeks since the brutal conflict began an estimated 726 civilians have been killed and more than 1,000 injured, while more than 2 million are understood to have fled the country to escape the shelling. 

While nations allied to Ukraine have so far opted against joining the conflict on the ground, there has been a concerted effort globally to strike Russia’s economy with a series of hard-hitting sanctions, while scores of high-profile brands have suspended business, including Starbucks, McDondals and Coca-Cola.

From a motorcycling perspective, a number of companies have already acted to distance themselves from Russia with the likes of Harley-Davidson, Polaris, Ducati, BMW and Honda halting exports to the country, while the latter - together with Yamaha - have donated €1 million and €750,000 to assist in humanitarian aid.

However, if other motorcycle manufacturers were still mulling the impact of taking themselves out of Russia, for many the decision has now been taken for them after new measures from the EU resulted in a ban on motorcycles (priced above €5,000) being exported to the nation. 

The Official Journal of the European Union was updated on 15 March to target Russia across a number of facets, including energy, iron and steel products and luxury goods, the latter of which includes motorcycles.

“Vehicles, except ambulances, for the transport of persons on earth, air or sea of a value exceeding EUR 50 000 each, teleferics, chairlifts, ski-draglines, traction mechanisms for funiculars, motorbikes of a value exceeding EUR 5 000 each, as well as their accessories and spare parts.” 

“It then goes on to list equipment subsystems related to those vehicles, as well as the vehicles themselves. The entry for motorbikes spells the official definition out as “Motorcycles (including mopeds) and cycles fitted with an auxiliary motor, with or without side-cars; side-cars.”

In case you were wondering, motorcycles are considered a ‘luxury item’ on a list that includes caviar, horses, truffles, wines and electronics.