Lithuanian authorities are considering what to do with companies that continue to trade with Russia, which attacked Ukraine. One possible measure is a public list of these companies. The statistics speak for themselves – if there is less direct trade with Russia, then exports to its neighboring countries have increased 5 times since the start of the war in Ukraine, ru.delfi.lt wrote.
Trade trends of Lithuanian companies with Russia were discussed on Wednesday at a meeting of the Parliamentary Committee for National Security and Defense (PKNBO). During the meeting, it was pointed out that we are talking about companies that sell goods that are not subject to sanctions, but the moral question of trading with the aggressor is raised.
PCNBO President Laurynas Kasciunas said more than 200 companies are still trading with Russia.
“Last year there were 50% fewer of these companies, but there are still some. Yes, formally the goods do not fall under sanctions, so trade is possible, but there remains the question of ‘a moral assessment of the situation and what we can do, how business. There is an idea of making these businesses public,’ he said.
During the meeting, data analyst Vaidotas Zemlis-Balevičius presented trade statistics with Russia and with its neighboring countries (Belarus, Kazakhstan, etc.). He pointed out that these are statistics from which the energy trade component has been removed. “Exports to Russia have decreased by 35%, but to countries neighboring Russia they have doubled. Total exports increased by 5%,” he explained.
Imports, according to the expert, have decreased significantly. “But there are some signs of recovery,” Zemlis-Balyavichyus said.
As for goods subject to sanctions, the effect is similar. “We see that since the beginning of the war, exports have decreased, but more have been exported to neighboring countries,” the analyst said. He noted that goods that fell under sanctions also enter Russia. “Every month we export a quarter of a billion to neighboring countries, and before this figure was 50 million. This means that exports to neighboring countries have increased 5 times,” explained Zemlis-Balevičius. “He does not make credit”, – said the analyst. Moreover, as he pointed out, the volume of exports to Belarus has increased since the beginning of the war and amounts to about 173 million euros.
The specialist explained that Lithuanian companies mainly export used cars (re-export), agricultural machinery, auto parts, trailers.
According to him, a similar effect with goods not subject to sanctions is visible in other EU countries. “Decrease in exports to Russia, but growth to other countries. The same trends are observed. We can see three countries that increased their exports after the start of the war: Slovenia, Latvia and Bulgaria. As for the neighboring countries mentioned, almost all of them, with the exception of Sweden and Malta, have increased their exports. This means that the problem is pan-European,” commented the expert.