The Russian Agriculture Ministry prepares draft Government decree to extend food embargo until the end of 2017. At the same time, the ministry does not propose to expand the list of the products prohibited for import to Russia, Agriculture Minister Alexander Tkachev told journalists on Friday.
"The Russian Agriculture Ministry has already started to prepare the draft decree providing extension of the response measures until the end of 2017. The list of food products is not planned for expansion, we are talking only about extending the duration," he said, adding that extension of food embargo is "good news for domestic agricultural producers."
Earlier on Friday, Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev directed to draft proposals on extension of the food embargo until 2017 year-end.
"I asked to draft proposals on extension of response measures until 2017 year-end and not for a year. An address to the President and the government decree framing the required decision will be prepared. Therefore, those dealing with the food business will have a longer planning horizon for investments, as local companies repeatedly requested," the Prime Minister said.
Domestic agricultural producers repeatedly supported continuation of the food embargo on goods from countries that imposed sanctions against Russia or joined them later, Medvedev added.
The sanctions were imposed in August 2014 in retaliation for Western sanctions resulting from the crisis in Ukraine. The restrictions cover a range of products, including meat, fish, dairy products and fruit and vegetables, causing problems for these markets in many countries. Other products were subsequently added to the list, such as lactose-free milk and salmon and trout hatchlings. However, some EU reports indicate that food producers are compensating for the loss of the Russian market by exporting more to other third countries.