Russian President Vladimir Putin held a telephone talk with the Kazakh and Belarusian leaders to discuss measures aimed at preventing re-exports of banned foods into Russia, the Kremlin press office said on Wednesday.
The Russian government has banned the imports of foodstuffs and agricultural products from the European Union, the United States and other countries in response to their sanctions against Russia over its stance on Ukraine.
Experts have said that banned foods could be re-exported from the territory of Belarus and Kazakhstan that form the customs union with Russia.
“The parties discussed some issues of cooperation within the Eurasian Economic Union, including coordination of measures aimed at preventing illegal supplies of some products to Russia via Kazakhstan and Belarus from some countries whose deliveries were banned in accordance with the Russian government’s recent resolution,” the Kremlin press office said.
The three leaders also exchanged their opinions on the formats of international efforts to assist the quickest resolution of the internal political crisis in Ukraine, the Kremlin press office said.
“The leaders expressed their serious concern over the heavy humanitarian consequences of the military operation being conducted by the Kiev authorities in southeast Ukraine. Putin informed the Kazakh and Belarus leaders about a humanitarian mission dispatched by Russia in interaction with the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Ukrainian side,” the Kremlin press office said.
On August 7, the Russian government announced a one-year ban on the imports of beef, pork, vegetables and fruit, poultry, fish, cheeses, milk and dairy products from the European Union, Australia, Canada, Norway and the United States in response to western sanctions against Russia.
Combined with other import bans imposed earlier this year, Russia’s new trade measures cover Western imports worth $9.1 billion in 2013, according to Russian customs data. EU countries are expected to suffer most from Russia’s ban as they supplied food products worth $6.5 billion in 2013.