July 16, 2020, 20:01

German Firms Concerned Over Possible US Extraterritorial Russia Sanctions – Trade Official

German Firms Concerned Over Possible US Extraterritorial Russia Sanctions – Trade Official

BERLIN (Sputnik) – German companies are concerned about the possible introduction of new extraterritorial sanctions against Russia by the United States as they may have unpredictable consequences for companies involved with Russian businesses, Russian trade representative in Germany, Andrey Sobolev said.

“According to the German Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, most German companies have adapted to the current sanctions regime, but they continue to express some concern, especially with regard to the possible extraterritorial application of restrictive measures taken by the United States against Russia. German businesses are concerned about this due to the unpredictability of the consequences of these measures for companies involved in business with Russia. Thus, a number of experts consider the sanctions adopted and approved by the US Congress against Russia as a violation of international law”, Sobolev said.

According to him, German exporters of food products continue to suffer financial losses, namely about $3 billion since 2014, due to the ban on European food product export to Russia since Germany has an export-oriented economy.

Russian-German trade over the first quarter of 2019 amounted to $13.9 billion, Sobolev said, citing the Russian Federal Customs Service. Russian exports to Germany increased by 4.9 percent year-on-year and totalled $8.9 billion, while imports from Germany decreased by 15.5 percent to $5 billion over the given period.

Russia’s economic and political relations with the West, including Germany, significantly deteriorated in 2014 over the crisis in Ukraine and Crimea’s decision to rejoin Russia. The West has accused Moscow of meddling in Ukrainian internal affairs and imposed sanctions on the country, while Russia has denied the accusations and introduced a food embargo on the states that targeted it with restrictive measures.

Extraterritorial sanctions, or secondary sanctions, restrict the economic activity of any government or entity that have no links to the country that imposed said sanctions, which are therefore regarded as a violation of sovereignty and international law.

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