Europe condemns Russian ban on livestock imports

brussels / reuters / A Russian ban on importing livestock from the European Union is raising major questions over Moscow’s commitment to global trade rules.

Last month Russia announced a ban on imports of live animals from several EU countries affected by the Schmallenberg virus, which has infected sheep, goats and cattle in eight European countries.

Russia’s ban has now been extended to the whole EU and includes imports of live pigs, which are not affected by the virus. The EU is demanding an immediate lifting of the restrictions by Russia, its biggest market for live animal exports, saying it is “sending a very negative signal to its international trade partners.”

Canada has asked for more information from the EU about the virus, but only Russia and Egypt have imposed import restrictions to date.

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