17 Apr 2018 16:53

Russian-German business circles opposed to escalation in reciprocal sanctions

MOSCOW. April 17 (Interfax) - The Russian-German Trade Chamber of Commerce is calling on Western countries to avoid tightening sanctions against Russia; and on Moscow to refrain from punishing German and other foreign business for the latest U.S. sanctions.

"After the new sanctions against Russia were adopted in Washington, the Russian-German Chamber of Commerce called on Western politicians to avoid any further tightening of sanctions," a statement from the Chamber, sent to Interfax said.

The Chamber also appealed to the Russian government to refrain from putting its achievements in improving the investment climate of the country at risk and to continue economic reforms.

"Pressure on German and other foreign business, as well as demands on certain companies take up a position in the conflict would be a fundamentally bad signal. German companies invest more in Russia than any other foreign business. So it has been, is, and will be," the chairman of the Russian-German Chamber of Commerce Matthias Schepp was cited as saying.

At present, the activities of German companies in Russia "are being seriously constrained amid more complicated relations between the two counties and U.S. sanctions policy, which has only just begun to demonstrate its ex-territorial effect," the Chamber said.

"Precisely for this reason, all international political efforts should be aimed at the soonest possible resolution of the conflict. German business in Russia stands in support of long-term and effective cooperation with Russian business - up to the creation of a single economic space from Vladivostok to Lisbon. German companies including Allianz, Knauf Group CIS, Metro AG, Rhenus Logistics, Siemens and Wilo Pumpen recently signed the corresponding memorandum," the statement said.