MOSCOW, December 28. /TASS/. There is a probability of the European Union lifting its anti-Russian sanctions in 2018, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov said in an interview with the Izvestia daily published on Thursday.
"I’d refrain from indulging in forecasting, the more so in guesswork. But there is such a probability in the coming year. Let us wait and see how big it is," he said when asked about possible lifting of the sanctions.
The Russian diplomat stressed that revision of the sanction policy would require a lot of "political will" from the European Union.
The European Union passed a political decision to extend the anti-Russian economic sanctions at its summit in Brussels on December 14-15. The decision came into effect on December 22.
At a regular summit in March 2015, the EU leaders decided to make the issue of lifting the anti-Russian economic sanctions dependent on the full implementation of the Minsk agreements. Since then, the sanctions have been automatically extended, without going into details of the implementation process.
Along with the anti-Russian economic sanctions, the European Union has drawn a blacklist of Russian legal entities and individuals, which is effective till March 2018, a set of sanctions against Crimea (in force till June) banning all business contacts.