Russian President Vladimir Putin has urged Russian business leaders to bring money held abroad back to Russia sooner rather than later, warning that international sanctions could see foreign assets frozen.
"I would like to repeat that the situation is such that alarming information is coming from some countries and we are getting the impression that attempts may be made to prevent the return of capital to Russia," Putin told the business community at the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs congress in Moscow on Thursday, according to a transcript of the speech published on the Kremlin's website.
Russia has been sanctioned by both Europe and the U.S. for its part in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, where violence flared up a year ago, and for its annexation of the Crimea region. The sanctions are due to expire in July but could be extended, according to European leaders who met to discuss the matter on Thursday.
Seeming to allude to the prospect of further sanctions, Putin said those could see "limits on the use of the capital that is now in foreign jurisdictions."