Russia PM wants to extend Iceland embargo to end 2017

Russia’s Prime Minister has expressed his wish to see the current embargo on food from the West – including Iceland – extended as far as the end of 2017.

Russia has banned the importing of food from various Western countries in retaliation for sanctions against Russia for their action in Ukraine. Iceland was added to the list in August last year.

Russia is a major market for Icelandic fisheries products.

Russia is a major market for Icelandic fisheries products. Photo: Albert Kemp

The embargo covers all Icelandic fisheries and agricultural products except lamb, ewe meat, horsemeat and canned seafood.

G7 nations announced on Saturday that there will be no backing down on sanctions against Russia until they meet all of their obligations in Ukraine under the ‘Minsk protocol’. Iceland is a party to the sanctions against Russia and has repeatedly stated its support for the EU and US-led action.

Federica Mogherini, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security ...

Federica Mogherini, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said recently that Western sanctions on Russia would be extended by six months. AFP

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev wants Russia to continue banning Western produce until the end of 2017. According to the Moscow Times, any such extension of the embargo on the Russian side is subject to the approval of President Putin.

Russian government figures suggest that their action has cost the West $9.3 billion (approx. ISK 1.164 trillion). Icelandic food producers – particularly in the fisheries industry – are taking their share of the hit.

As things stand, the Russian embargo is due to expire in three months’ time.

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