Prime Minister Tony Abbott has put Moscow on notice, warning that Australia will consider banning uranium sales in the event of a Russian incursion into Ukraine.
Mr Abbott said on Saturday Australia would not accept that any Russian troop movement across the border could have a humanitarian purpose.
“Everything’s on the table,” he said when asked about the prospect of extending sanctions to include uranium.
“Our message to President (Vladimir) Putin is, `hold your forces back’,” Mr Abbott said.
“Any move by Russian forces across the border would be an invasion, pure and simple.
“The business of Ukraine should be left to Ukrainians to sort out.”
The comments come three days after Russia slapped an embargo on agricultural imports from Australia, the European Union, the United States, Canada and others.
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the government was working with affected Australian agricultural producers to try to get access to other markets.
But he said the $400 million of trade hit by Russia’s sanctions represented only about 0.4 per cent of exports.
“It is not a significant amount of trade,” he said.