Finnish journalists have found that luxury cars enter the Russian market through Finland
Finland has become a transit country for exporting luxury cars to Russia, as revealed by the Finnish media Yle.
Journalists received a tip that expensive cars were loaded onto ships in Germany, transported to Finland, and then sent to Russia via the Finnish port of Kotka. They conducted an investigation using radio beacons attached to two cars, a BMW X3 and a Lexus RX350, which were headed for the Russian border.
They managed to track that the cars passed through St. Petersburg and Moscow, and after a few weeks, they ended up in Tomsk. There, they spotted the Lexus in a local car dealership, while the BMW was seen on the city's roads. Yle speculated that the second car had likely already been sold.
Finnish customs officials informed Yle that luxury cars can be imported into Russia with dual documentation: they present a document at the Finnish border indicating that the cargo is headed to Central Asia, and at the Russian border, they show that the car is being directed to the Russian Federation.
EU sanctions prohibit the import of expensive goods and cars into Russia. However, the sanctions allow for the transit of cars through Russian territory if they are intended for sale in countries like Kazakhstan, as noted by the publication.