Russia eases ban on Turkish agricultural import

Russia eases ban on Turkish agricultural import Photo: Max Pixel

Onions, cauliflower and broccoli from Turkey can be imported to Russia again. Earlier, when the government lifted an embargo on citrus products, Turkey's export to Russia rose by almost 60%. On Friday, the Turkish president visited his Russian counterpart to discuss the Syrian conflict as well as further economic cooperation.

Russia partially rescinded its ban on Turkish agricultural products, reports Europe Online Magazine. The governmental decree signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev allowed import of Turkish onions, cauliflower and broccoli. The embargo on poultry, apples, pears, grapes, strawberries, cucumbers and tomatoes, one of Turkey's most important agricultural products, remained in effect.

The supplies have been restricted since January 2016 as a result of the deterioration in the two countries' relationship after Turkey shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian border in November 2015. Besides the embargo, Russia restricted employment of Turkish construction workers and prohibited local travel agencies from selling package tours to Turkey. However, in June 2016, Ankara apologised for the incident, and the sides began a rapprochement.

On 10 March, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met with Vladimir Putin in Moscow. Although the Syrian conflict was the main topic of the negotiations, the two leaders also discussed further steps to restore mutually beneficial trade and economic ties between Moscow and Ankara.

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan meets with Vladimir Putin in Moscow, 10 March 2017. Photo: kremlin.ru

''We are very pleased that our interstate relations are recovering at a rather rapid pace, while trade and economic relations are also being restored,'' stated Vladimir Putin at the meeting. ''Investment cooperation and preparations for the implementation of major projects are continuing.'' His Turkish couterpart announced that ''the defence industry, energy and others are the main elements of cooperation of the two economies at present''.

In October 2016, the Russian government lifted the embargo on Turkish citrus products. As a result, the volume of Turkey's export to Russia rose by 59,1% to $150 million in January. Russia's export to Turkey, which mostly consists of energy and steel supplies, also increased by 10,2%. This has been the first time since 2014 when the trade turnover between the two countries showed an increase. Before 2014, the trade was successful: it rose from $26,2bn in 2010 to $31,2bn by the end of 2014.

By Anna Litvina