Anti-corruption sanctions regimes

There are many types of sanctions put in place by international bodies and autonomous jurisdictions, using various political, financial and trade tools to influence particular countries, groups or individuals. This web platform focuses on unilateral measures imposed by jurisdictions in the framework of their foreign policy that apply financial sanctions in response to corruption allegations. Concretely, these sanctions freeze the assets of persons accused of the misappropriation of state funds, prohibit any funds from being made available to them and sometimes also ban them from traveling to the sanctioning country via visa bans.


Disclaimer: The following is a general description of terms used throughout this website. For exact terms used in context, please see the up-to-date version of the relevant legislation. If you are in doubt about any of the below, please contact your competent national authority or seek independent legal advice.

Asset freezes make funds and economic resources of the designated person unavailable for the period they are in force. This process does not however involve confiscation or a change in the ownership of the frozen funds and economic resources. 1


The process of identifying, freezing and returning assets stolen through corruption to the country of origin. 1

Designated national authorities responsible for implementing financial sanctions. For a list of these authorities see the Guidelines page on this website.

A ruler who uses their power to steal their country's resources. 1

A type of financial sanction related to grand corruption - “misappropriation of state assets” implemented by the European Union. These sanctions can restrict access to funds and economic resources of individuals, entities and bodies. For more see our report ‘Sanctioning Kleptocrats. An Assessment of EU Misappropriation Sanctions.’

Restrictive measures that can take a number of different forms, in pursuit of a variety of goals. Measures range from comprehensive economic and trade sanctions to more targeted measures such as arms embargoes, travel bans, and financial or commodity restrictions. 1