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Russia bans agricultural exports from EU, US, others

Russia is banning nearly all agricultural imports from countries supporting trade sanctions on Russia.
President Vladimir Putin announced the sanctions Wednesday, but a full list of imports, including 11 products from Australia, Canada, the U.S., the European Union and Norway,  was released today.
The list of imports now barred from entry includes cattle meat, pork, poultry, salted or smoked meat, fish and shellfish, dairy products, vegetables, fruit, nuts, cheese and sausage, according to a report from The Guardian.
The EU exports to Russia on the list totaled €5.3 billion in 2013.
Australia's exports to Russia in 2013 were valued at A$738 million, according to Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Its main exports to Russia included beef, butter, and live animals. The embargo will cut about 46.7 percent, or $345 million, of all products exported from Australia to Russia.
Canada exports mainly meat and seafood to Russia. Norway’s exports to Russia are mainly fish and shellfish.
Russia’s trade embargo will mean a loss of nearly 25 percent of U.S. container trade with Russia. According to PIERS, the data division of JOC Group, the U.S. exported 112,595 TEUs to Russia in 2013. Of that, 28,676 TEUs, or 25.5 percent, were of products on the embargo list.
U.S. containerized exports to Russia declined 3.9 percent year-over-year in 2013. Through June this year, 55,779 TEUs were shipped from the U.S. to Russia, a drop of 1.2 percent from the same six-month period in 2013.
Chicken exports will be the biggest agricultural product affected by Russia’s new bans. Though it has been the top U.S. export to Russia, volume fell 71.4 percent from 1997 to 2012, and the downward trend is continuing.
American Soybean Association President Ray Gaesser released a statement Thursday saying that Russia is a key trading partner for all involved in U.S. agriculture. He called on all American farmers to urge Putin to rescind the ban.
“ASA pushed hard for the establishment of permanent normal trade relations with Russia last year because of the significant growth and opportunity presented in the Russian marketplace,” Gaesser said. “Sanctions and bans like the one proposed by President Putin serve only to hurt the Russian people by limiting their access to the food and products they need and want.”
The U.S. imposed trade sanctions on Russia this springs in the wake of conflict in Ukraine. The government placed a hold on all new American trade deals with Russia earlier last month, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture suspended all credit programs involving exports to Russia as part of U.S. sanctions on the country.
Russia’s ban on agricultural imports went into effect today, and will stay in place for a year, Russian officials said.

 

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