EU imports of Russian fish soar
Exports of Russian fish to the European Union in 2022 surged by nearly 20%, according to the latest review released by the Russian Fishery Industry Association (VARPE).
EU imports of fish from the sanctioned country saw a year-on-year increase of 18.7%, to 198.8 thousand tons, the report shows based on Eurostat’s data. Meanwhile, the value of Russian fish exports to the bloc soared 57.6% to €940 million (over $1 billion) with the Netherlands, Poland and Germany the biggest buyers.
White fish accounted for 47% of the total volume of shipments, and for 54.7% in monetary terms. Meanwhile, pollock products made up 41% in terms of value and 32.3% in monetary terms.
Russia accounted for 4.5% of the EU’s 4.4 million tons of fish and seafood imports in 2022.
The EU is one of the most attractive world markets for fish producers, while Russia, along with China, Norway and the US is one of the major suppliers of white fish to the bloc.
According to the president of VARPE, German Zverev, the uptick in exports was likely down to wholesalers and processors increasing their stocks in anticipation of possible sanctions on Russian fish.
Zverev expects Russia to become the world’s number one producer of Atlantic cod as soon as this year, providing the country's producers good opportunities to strengthen their influence in that segment of white fish sales. However, he said that continued uncertainty about future sanctions would continue to impact the industry.
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