Economic Sanctions And International Institutions With An Invaluable Instrument Of Coercion

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Economic sanctions provide states and international institutions with an invaluable instrument of coercion. Without having to resort to violence, at least in the traditional sense, states can gain concessions and compliance from the target state. Economic sanctions are, however, not always successful. An analysis of 204 cases of implemented economic sanctions, from the start of the Cold War to 2000, revealed that economic sanctions were “at least partially successful” a mere 34% of the time (Hufbauer). While all economic sanctions have financial implications, there is a distinction to be drawn between economic sanctions—which include both trade and financial sanctions—and financial sanctions, as a standalone term. Financial sanctions can be defined as “restrictions that limit the provision of certain financial services or restrict access to financial markets, funds and economic resources in order to achieve a specific foreign policy or national security objective” (Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation HM Treasury). As the international financial system has become more globalized, and as a result more difficult to avoid while engaging in practically any form of economic transaction, the efficacy of financial sanctions has increased over more traditional forms of economic sanctions. Modern financial sanctions also have the added benefit of being more precise than their alternatives. This enables initiator states to institute sanctions in a more stylized manner and
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