ROME, February 26. /TASS/. Anti-Russia sanctions and Russia’s counter-sanctions caused €5.3 billion worth of direct losses in the Italian economy even before ruble plunge in 2014, President of Banca Intesa Russia, which is the Russian subsidiary of Intesa Sanpaolo, Antonio Fallico said Thursday.
Last year the trade turnover between Russia and Italy dropped 17% compared with 2013, Fallico said. According to estimates by the analytical department at Intesa Sanpaolo, based on the Italian National Institute of Statistics (Istat) data, apart from the agricultural sector affected by Russia’s counter-sanctions, Italian exports of textiles, apparel and leather were hurt the most (-16.4%), as were exports of electrical appliances, machines and transport vehicles (-13.7%).
"In a short period of time the work of our companies, which managed to enter and successfully develop on the promising Russian market, was destroyed. The export of Italian production to Russia skyrocketed by 327% in recent 15 years," President said.
He also added that despite all political uncertainties, it’s still necessary to invest in Russia. "The geopolitical tensions, falling oil prices and the ruble plunge, which negatively affect the Russian economy, should not lead to cease of investment. We’re talking about the sum totaling €400 billion meant for big projects, where Italian know-how may play an important role. We should not give way to new Moscow’s partners," he said.