These officials have become increasingly concerned that Russia is obtaining American and European goods by rerouting them through Armenia, Kazakhstan and other Central Asian countries, according to slides from the March 24 meeting obtained by The New York Times.
“In 2022, Armenia imported 515 per cent more chips and processors from the United States and 212 per cent more from the European Union than in 2021. Armenia then exported 97 per cent of those same products to Russia”, according to a document from the March meeting marked with the seal of the US Bureau of Industry and Security.
In another document, the Bureau of Industry and Security identified eight categories of chips and components deemed critical to Russian weapons development, including one called a field programmable gate array, which had been found in one model of the Russian cruise missile, the KH-101.
The intelligence sharing between the United States and Europe is part of a nascent but intensifying effort to minimize the leakage of such items to Russia. While the United States has deeper experience with enforcing sanctions, the European Union lacks centralized intelligence, customs and law enforcement abilities, the report said.
Direct sales of chips to Russia from the United States and its allies have plummeted to zero. US officials say Russia has already blown through much of the supply of its most accurate weapons and has been forced to substitute lower-quality or counterfeit parts that make its weaponry less accurate.