The ban on labeling of foreign alcohol supplied to Russia will cause damage to the Baltic countries in the amount of €300 million a year, said the governor of the Kaliningrad region Anton Alikhanov
Russia, as a response to the restriction of the transit of sanctioned goods by Lithuania, could ban the labeling of imported foreign alcohol on the territory of the Baltic countries, Governor of the Kaliningrad region Anton Alikhanov said in an interview with Anton Krasovsky on RT.
Alikhanov expressed hope that the situation with Lithuanian restrictions on transit between the Kaliningrad region and the rest of Russia could be resolved through diplomacy, including during a meeting at the Russian Foreign Ministry scheduled for June 21 with the participation of EU Ambassador Markus Ederer. “Maybe he will offer some solution from his side,” — said the governor of the Kaliningrad region.
If the situation is not resolved, Russia has options for retaliatory measures. In particular, Alikhanov said, it is possible to ban the labeling of foreign alcohol supplied to Russia on the territory of the Baltic countries.
“In our country, until recently, almost 100% of imported alcohol was imported through the territory of Lithuania and Latvia. This imported alcohol was stored there, where the marking was our Russian excise stamps, and then it was transported by Lithuanian companies to the territory of the Russian Federation, — he said.
Alikhanov estimated the annual losses of the Baltic countries in the event of such a decision at €300 million.
Lithuania has banned the transit of sanctioned goods between the Kaliningrad region and the rest of Russia since June 18. This decision affected the supply of building materials, metals, cement and other goods to the region, which came under EU sanctions in the spring.
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Head of the region Anton Alikhanov called the transit restriction a gross violation of international obligations of both Lithuania and the EU, and the Russian Foreign Ministry protested to Vilnius and demanded the immediate lifting of the restrictions.
The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry in response to Moscow's claims reported that the country complies with EU sanctions and does not introduce any unilateral and additional restrictions. The ministry added that the transit of goods that did not fall under the restrictive measures of Brussels continues.
Against this background, Alikhanov said that the European Commission should amend the sanctions package in order to resolve the situation with transit. In the Federation Council, the restriction of transit was compared with the “blockade” and threatened with serious retaliatory measures.
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