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Ukraine extends anti-Russian trade sanctions for one year

Ukraine extends anti-Russian trade sanctions for one year
The Ukrainian government has decided to keep the tariffs against Russian goods in force for another year, Verkhovna Rada Deputy Aleksey Goncharenko said on Wednesday.

The levies on Russian imports will stay in place until the end of 2020, the politician said, adding the move comes in response to Moscow’s actions. The Russian government has already warned that it will come up with retaliatory measures, and the relevant documents are set to be signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev soon, according to his press secretary.

Moscow and Kiev terminated their free trade deal in 2016, after the trade part of Kiev’s association agreement with the European Union came into force. Since then both sides imposed multiple trade restrictions against each other.

After the embargo was prolonged last year, Moscow said that tariffs can be lifted if Kiev gives up its own restrictions targeting specific Russian goods.

The latest round of bilateral sanctions came in April, when Kiev blacklisted imports of glass containers, formalin, electric equipment for railway infrastructure, and other products from Russia. Russia responded with an embargo on oil and petroleum products, and also imposed a ban on some industrial goods, agricultural products, raw materials, and food.

Previously, mutual sanctions did not stop the growth of the turnover between Russia and Ukraine, but in the first eight months of 2019 bilateral trade fell nearly 13 percent to $8.2 billion. Russia still enjoys a trade surplus with its neighboring country, as its exports stand at around $5 billion and imports of Ukranian goods to Russia amount to around $3.2 billion.

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