On Monday, the European Union extended its anti-Russia sanctions for another half a year — a move welcomed by the United States. Moscow has vowed to respond to the extension of the sanctions.
"The worst affected sector was the food industry which, according to our statistics, lost 532 million euro in value when imports of fruit, vegetables, meat and fish [to Russia] disappeared," Sanchez Melero said. He noted that in 2014 Spanish imports from Russia decreased by 9.4 percent and exports to Russia decreased by 26.5 percent, compared to 2013.
According to the Spanish diplomat, the second worst-hit area of Spanish-Russian cooperation is tourism. In the first trimester of 2015, Spain saw a 25 percent decrease in the number of tourists from Russia compared to the same period in 2014.
According to Sanchez Melero, supplies of Spanish cars, ceramics and pharmaceuticals to Russia suffered significant losses, not only because of western sanctions and countermeasures but as a result of a decline in demand and an unfavorable economic environment.
According to Sanchez Melero, Spain still considers Russia "a priority country" and Spanish leadership continues efforts to support and promote bilateral business activity and trade.