Russia lost $1.5 billion because of trade war with Turkey


Russia lost from 1.3 to 1.5 billion dollars because of duties on grain supplies to Turkey, imposed in response to a ban on the import of Turkish tomatoes into Russia.

It follows from the report (.pdf), prepared by experts of the Gaidar Institute and the Russian Academy of National Economy and Civil Service.

According to the experts, the trade war with Turkey frees a $1.5-billion market niche for Russian tomato producers.

“The question whether Russian producers will be able to fill it with a reasonably priced tomatoes remains open,” the report says.

The experts also note that the Russian embargo caused an increase in prices for tomatoes in stores: domestic tomatoes are much more expensive than imported ones.

The Turkish ban as a reciprocal step looks more painful for Russia than the ban on Turkish products by Russia for Turkey.

Russia imposed a food embargo against Turkey after a Turkish jet fighter shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber in November 2015 in Syria. Russia started lifting sanctions in the summer of 2016, but the supply of some goods, including tomatoes, remained banned.

After failing to negotiate lifting of restrictions on exports to Russia, Turkey abolished the duty-free import of Russian grain in 2017. The duty rate is 130%, which in fact means a cessation of supply.