MOSCOW, August 19. /TASS/. The Russian government does not wish to expand the list of goods under sanctions, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said on Wednesday in an interview with Russia 24 TV Channel.
"There is no wish to expand this list [of goods under sanctions]," Dvorkovich said. "However, I cannot rule out individual changes in the list will take place, just as it took place earlier. Still, no large-scale action is planned," Dvorkovich said.
"We are analyzing the situation on a going base and trying not to act at a large scale and use pointed measures. This is because we do not want to affect the economic cooperation of Russia with other countries. We take measures where it is indeed required to protect interests of our producers," the deputy prime minister said.
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev told a government meeting last week that he had signed an instruction to expand a list of countries falling under Russian sanctions.
"Russia banned imports of some agricultural products from the European Union, Australia, Canada, Norway and the United States in August last year. Now, Albania, Montenegro, Iceland and the County of Liechtenstein have joined the list. Ukraine has been included in the list on special terms," the Russian prime minister said. He explained that those five new countries had previously supported the EU decision to extend sanctions against Russia.
Medvedev explained that the countries, which he mentioned, had knowingly made a decision to side with the European Union in question of extending the anti-Russian sanctions. "They said their decision to join the EU sanctions against Russia was motivated by a number of agreements with the European Union," Medvedev went on to say.
"This stance is only partly fair. I would like to note that a number of countries, which have a similar agreement with the European Union, have refused to impose sanctions against Russia. So, the decision to join the anti-Russian sanctions was a conscious choice, which means that the countries who did that are ready for the retaliatory measures, which we have imposed on them," Medvedev concluded.
According to the Federal Customs Service of Russia, the overall imports to Russia from Albania, Montenegro, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Ukraine in 2014 amounted to $11.048 bln, or 3.8% of the total value of imports ($286.7 bln). In this case, the share of products, which came under sanctions was $656.2 mln, or 5.9%. In 2014, Montenegro supplied goods worth $6 million to Russia. Of this volume, the value of products which is subject to counter-sanctions was $40,000 (6.7 tonnes of vegetables and 37.4 tonnes of fruit).