Sanctions refer to a federal government actions restricting economic activity between the sanctioning country and foreign entities, including people and other nations. These restrictions, including blocking off assets and trade, are made for reasons other than business, such as foreign policy or national security. This makes sanctions distinct from trade tariffs directed at specific countries or regions.
Sanctions are usually issued as a program of restrictions. The programs stem from executive orders, legislation or other government actions to address specific issues or behaviors.