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Russian embargo still affects made in Italy agri-food exports

Navalny case, new sanctions on the way

Made in Italy agri-food exports to Russia have lost over 1.3 billion in the last six and a half years

Also for the USA, the Moscow government is behind the poisoning with the Novichok of the Russian opponent Alexei Navalny, the number one enemy of Vladimir Putin. It is the conclusion of a declassified US intelligence report, which prompted the Biden administration to launch its first sanctions against Russia. The latter will respond to the new US sanctions "on the basis of the principle of reciprocity", but the reaction "will not necessarily be symmetrical", said the spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, reprized by the Interfax agency. Made in Italy agri-food exports to Russia have lost over 1.3 billion in the last six and a half years due to the embargo decided by Putin which still affects an important list of European products with a ban on the entry of fruit and vegetables, cheeses, meat and cured meats, but also fish, as a retaliation for the sanctions of the European Union. This is what emerges from an analysis by Coldiretti in reference to the announcement that Russia will respond to the new sanctions for the Navalny case.

The agri-food sector is the only sector still directly affected by the embargo decided by Russia with decree no 778 of 7 August 2014 due to the crisis in Ukraine and renewed several times which led to the complete elimination of exports to Russia of products on the black list, from Parmigiano Reggiano to Grana Padano, from Parma ham to San Daniele ham, but also fruit and vegetables. "To the direct damage of the lack of exports to Russia is added the insult of the spread on the market of imitation products that have nothing to do with Made in Italy made in Russia (Parmesan, mozzarella, robiola, etc.) or in non-affected countries from the embargo such as scamorza, mozzarella, provoletta, mascarpone and ricotta made in Belarus, but also salami Milano, Parmesan and Gorgonzola of Swiss production and Parmesan or Reggianito of Brazilian or Argentine origin", explains Coldiretti.

The damage also concerns Italian restaurants in Russia which, after a rapid explosion, risks being curbed due to the lack of the main ingredients. In some cases the dishes have disappeared from the menus while, in others, they have been replaced by local or foreign tarot cards without, however, there being a clear indication in the menus in the vast majority of restaurants. "This is an unsustainable cost for Italy, which has to face the difficulties caused by the Coronavirus emergency and it is important that the path of dialogue be resumed because the agri-food sector cannot be used as a bargaining chip in international negotiations without any consideration of the heavy impact that this entails on the economic, occupational and environmental level", communicates a press release of the association.

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EFA News - European Food Agency