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BEIJING, November 10. /TASS/. Sanctions are not a tool to develop economies, Russian Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Beijing.
Manturov commented on the recent statements of the European Union countries that sanctions against Russia for its position on Ukraine may be toughened.
“Let’s first wait for the decisions you are citing and then talk how we will respond to such decisions,” he said. “We are supporters of more pragmatic and sober economic solutions and believe that sanctions are not an instrument to develop economies.”
The APEC forum was established in November 1989 as a tool of peace and non-conflict solution of economic, social, environmental and other problems of the Asia-Pacific region (APR). The association’s activity is based on consensus.
The West, inspired by the United States, subjected Russian officials and companies to the first batch of sanctions, including visa bans and asset freezes, after Russia incorporated Crimea in mid-March after a coup in Ukraine in February.
New, sectoral, penalties against Russia were announced in late July over Moscow’s position on Ukrainian events, in particular, what the West claimed was Russia’s alleged involvement in hostilities in Ukraine’s embattled southeast.
Russia responded with imposing on August 6 a one-year ban on imports of beef, pork, poultry, fish, cheeses, fruit, vegetables and dairy products from Australia, Canada, the EU, the United States and Norway.
Moscow has repeatedly dismissed Western allegations that it could in any way be involved in hostilities in the southeast of Ukraine.
Fierce clashes between troops loyal to Kiev and local militias in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions during Kiev’s military operation, condcted since mid-April, to regain control over the breakaway territories, which call themselves the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s republics, have killed over 4,000 people.
The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on a ceasefire at talks mediated by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) on September 5 in Belarusian capital Minsk.