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Egyptian vegetables import ban 'not a response to restricting wheat import from Russia'

September 20, 14:21 UTC+3 MOSCOW
On September 22, Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance is imposing temporary restrictions on imports of plant products from Egypt
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© Alexandr Demyanchuk/TASS

MOSCOW, September 20. /TASS/. The ban on import of vegetables from Egypt is not a counter measure to Egypt limiting imports of Russian wheat, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich told reportedrs on Tuesday.

"This is not a counter measure to ban of import of fruits and vegetables from Egypt," Dvorkovich said.

On September 22, Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance (Rosselkhoznadzor) is imposing temporary restrictions on imports of plant products from Egypt.

"Due to continuing supplies of quarantineable products unsafe from phytosanitary viewpoint, which violates international and Russian laws, starting September 22 Rosselkhoznadzor is imposing temporary restrictions on imports of products with high phytosanitary risk to the Russian Federation from the Arab Republic of Egypt until the Egyptian side assumes efficient measures to ensure phytosanitary security of products imported to Russia," the report said.

Also, a decision was made earlier on Friday following the talks between representatives of the Russian regulator with the Egyptian side, on a visit of Egyptian experts to Russia for a detailed discussion on the situation related exports of plant products to Russia coming with systemic violations. 

Russia’s ban on Egyptian products and its impact on inflation 

The temporary ban on imports of plant products from Egypt to Russia will have no impact on inflation, Arkady Dvorkovich assured:

"Inflation in September is usually slightly higher as a rule, purely due to seasonality," he said, adding that "it is not related (to the ban on imports of fruits and vegetables from Egypt - TASS)." 

The restrictions will be in force until the Egyptian side assumes efficient measures to ensure phytosanitary safety of products.

In 2016, a total of 47 cases of supplies of diseased plant products from Egypt to Russia were revealed.

Minister of Agriculture Alexander Tkachev told TASS earlier that the Russian Ministry of Agriculture hopes that Egypt reconsiders its decision in respect of supplies of Russian wheat. "I hope that Egypt reconsiders its decision on Russian wheat supplies, it would be right and just. This is not critical for us - 3 mln tonnes out of 40 mln tonnes," he said.

Earlier Egypt imposed a requirement of total absence of spurred rye in the imported wheat, which makes it impossible for Russia to supply grain to the country. Earlier supplies of wheat containing spurred rye in the amount not more than 0.05% were allowed. Assistant to Head of Rosselkhoznadzor Aleksey Alekseenko said earlier that Rosselkhoznadzor would apply to Egypt for organizing talks regarding the issue.

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