Moscow may import ingredients of banned food and process them in Russia

Moscow is considering the possibility of importing ingredients from Western countries, to make from them the food on which restrictions have been imposed, in Russia, in retaliation against EU anti-Russian sanctions, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov said.

Moscow is considering the possibility of importing ingredients from Western countries, to make from them the food on which restrictions have been imposed, in Russia, in retaliation against EU anti-Russian sanctions, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov said.

"Being a WTO member country, Russia cannot be selective: it cannot impose sanctions on EU countries and selectively lift sanctions for only one state. In this case, we may consider the delivery of raw materials and investment in the construction of food processing plants here, on Russian territory, rather than direct deliveries," Peskov said in an interview published by the newspaper Izvestia on Monday. He was commenting on the request of the Greek government to lift the ban on imports of certain types of agricultural products, such as peaches, strawberries and oranges.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said during his working visit to Budapest in February 2015 that Russia might develop agro-industrial cooperation with Hungary in spite of the sanctions, Peskov recalled.

"In my opinion, the creation of joint ventures in agro-industries can help us resolve the situation of the Russian retaliatory ban on imports of agricultural products [from Europe]," Putin said.

Panayiotis Sgouridis, Greek Deputy Minister for Agricultural Development, told Rosselkhoznadzor's Alexei Alexeyenko earlier that Athens was interested in Russian exports and Greek farmers had seen losses due to Russia's counter-sanctions.

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