13 Dec 2017 11:14

Russia, EU to draft list of mutual trade restrictions for talks to reduce them - minister

BUENOS AIRES. Dec 13 (Interfax) - Russia and the European Union will prepare a list of mutual trade restrictions for subsequent discussions on reducing them, Russian Economic Development Minister Maxim Oreshkin said following a meeting with EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom at a WTO ministerial conference in Buenos Aires on Tuesday.

"I had a short meeting with EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom. We discussed the fact that we need to gradually move toward reducing trade barriers," Oreshkin told reporters.

He said he already discussed this issue a month ago with EU Ambassador to Russia Markus Ederer. "With the ambassador we discussed that we will now prepare lists of trade restrictions that both sides have and look at how to move forward in order to improve the situation," Oreshkin said.

The subject of sanctions and countersanctions will also be included in the overall list, he said. "The EU will certainly indicate [Russia's food embargo] in its list. But here I think the position of the Russian authorities is clear and there's nothing new," Oreshkin said.

"As for general WTO topics, at this conference our positions turned out to be very close with the EU, there are very many matters that we support together. That which we propose, the Europeans support, and we and the EU have fairly close views on the importance of the WTO as a system for managing and regulating world trade," Oreshkin said.