TOKYO, March 20. /ITAR-TASS/. Sanctions against Russia imposed by western countries after the referendum on the accession of Crimea do not hamper trade relations between Tokyo and Moscow, says Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Toshimitsu Motegi.
“To date, we see no negative effect on bilateral trade or on implementation of concrete projects,” he told a news conference on Thursday. “Nevertheless, our government continues to keep a close watch on changes in the international situation.”
Japan’s Minister of Finance Taro Aso told reporters that “sanctions against Russia have a limited effect on Japan’s economy”. “At present, the nature of sanctions seems limited,” he added.
After Russia signed the agreement on accession of the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol on March 18, Tokyo suspended talks with Moscow on easier visa rules and froze talks on possible conclusion of three treaties - on cooperation in investments, space exploration and prevention of dangerous military activities.
According to Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, in 2013 the Russian-Japanese trade reached a record high of $34.8 billion. Japan actively buys Russian fuel. In particular, Russia accounts for 10% of Japan’s total liquefied natural gas imports.