Friday 14 May 2021

Russian sanctions begin to bite in the Netherlands

The Russian sanctions imposed on Thursday against western countries are already beginning to bite in the Netherlands, Dutch media report on Friday.

The Financieele Dagblad reports that 300 trucks carrying vegetables and fruit have already been refused entry at the Russian border.

The effects are also being felt at the Zaltbommel trade auction where prices are already falling.

On Thursday, Russian prime minister Dmitri Medvedev announced that Russia is boycotting vegetables, fruit, meat, fish and dairy products from all countries supporting sanctions against Russia by the EU and US.

Spinach

One buyer in Zaltbommel told Nos television he just bought spinach for 30 euro cents a kilo. ‘On Wednesday the price was €1.10. No grower can live with that.’

The drop in prices not only affects the produce exported to Russia. Other produce, such as cauliflowers, is also suffering.

‘There is produce we do not export to Russia but other European countries do,’ a trader told the Nos. ‘If they cannot sell to Russia there is saturation of the whole European market and prices fall everywhere.’

Other goods

The transport sector not only delivers food produce to Russia but also many other goods such as high-tech machines and equipment for the offshore industry.

Trucking companies have seen a drop in volume over the past year, since fighting began in eastern Ukraine.

Henk van der Wal, who runs a transport company from Utrecht, told the FD his Russian office has seen freight volumes drop between 30% and 40% in the past year.

Threat

On Friday, foreign minister Frans Timmermans wrote on his Facebook page that the way in which Russia ‘invaded’ Crimea and is ‘stirring’ the situation in eastern Ukraine forms a serious threat to European and international security.

 

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