In 2018, the United States put Russian aluminium giant Rusal on a blacklist to turn the screws on influential oligarchs. Because of Rusal’s centrality in global alumina, bauxite and aluminium networks, the global repercussions were immediate.
The sanctions hit operations as far away as Guinea and Jamaica. Irish ministers held talks with the European Commission in an effort to save jobs at a refinery in Limerick. European car manufacturers that relied on Rusal for hard-to-substitute aluminium parts ultimately lobbied successfully for the sanctions’ reversal within a year.