Japan designated Tuesday nearly 300 items and technologies as subject to an export ban on Russia and Belarus from later this week to prevent them from boosting their military capabilities, as part of Tokyo's sanctions over Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

The embargo on exports of 266 products, such as semiconductors, communication equipment and cutting-edge materials, and 26 technologies, including design programs for chip-making machines, will take effect on Friday, according to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

In addition, exports of oil-refining equipment and related technologies to Russia, one of the world's major oil producers, will be prohibited, the ministry said.

All exports to 49 military-related Russian entities and two Belarusian organizations, including government agencies and manufacturers of aircraft and ships, will be strictly forbidden.

The move came as Japan and other Western nations, including members of the Group of Seven major developed countries, have been ramping up economic sanctions on Russia as the situation in Ukraine shows no sign of improving with Moscow stepping up its attacks on the former Soviet republic since Feb. 24.

Belarus has been accused of aiding the Russian aggression.

The United States and European nations have similarly banned shipments of products for military use and general-purpose commodities that could be used to strengthen Russian forces' capabilities.

As an exceptional measure, the ministry said exports to the two countries for humanitarian purposes could be allowed.

After Moscow's attack on Ukraine, Japan tightened screening on 235 export products, such as semiconductors, to Russia and Belarus.

In 2021, Japan's exports to Russia amounted to about 860 billion yen ($7.3 billion), with shipping vehicles and auto parts among the major items. The figure accounted for about 1 percent of the nation's 83 trillion yen in total worldwide exports, according to the Finance Ministry.

In an attempt to isolate Russia from the global financial system and economy, the G-7 nations have removed key Russian banks from the SWIFT international payment system and limited transactions with the Russian central bank.

Last week, the leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States, plus the European Union, also agreed to take steps to strip Russia of its status as a "most favored nation," which has granted the country the best possible trade terms on key products.

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