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    Russia, Turkey Express Desire to Lift Most Mutual Restrictions Soon

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    Russia and Turkey expressed their desire at a meeting in Moscow to lift most mutual restrictions regarding agricultural product deliveries as soon as possible, the Russian government said in a statement Tuesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Tuesday, Moscow hosted talks between Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich and Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek.

    "The participants noted that there is a common desire to remove the maximum number of restrictions that currently exist, as soon as possible, it was also stressed that there is the common understanding that some sensitive issues require step-by-step work," the statement said.

    It has been noted that within two weeks intensive consultations would be held to develop a schedule of further actions. The schedule would provide for the terms and stages of lifting certain existing restrictions.

    "The Russian side, in any case, expects from the Turkish partners to lift the restrictions imposed this year on grain supplies," Dvorkovich said.

    Simsek described the talks as productive.

    "We had a very productive meeting in Moscow, we discussed all the problems. We'll meet again in May and quickly find a solution to all the issues," Shimshek wrote in his Twitter blog, following talks with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich.

    ​On March 15, Turkish authorities changed its import regulations of some agricultural products for processing within the country’s borders, including wheat and sunflower oil, removing Russia from the list of countries that have the right to duty-free supplies.

    Meanwhile, Russia's food embargo on Turkey's food and agricultural products remains partly in place.

    At the beginning of 2016, Russia imposed a number of restrictive measures, including a ban on food and flowers imports, on Turkey in response to the downing of a Russian military aircraft by a Turkish fighter jet in Syria on November 24, 2015.

    In June, following Turkey's apology to Russia for the November 2015 incident, the sides began a reconciliation process. In August, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia would gradually lift the economic restrictions imposed on Turkey.

    On October 10, Putin announced the removal of embargo on Turkish fresh and dried oranges, tangerines, peaches, nectarines, plums and sloes.

    As of March 15, Turkish authorities changed its import regulations of some agricultural products for processing within the country’s borders, including wheat and sunflower oil. Russia was not included in the list of countries that have the right to duty-free supplies. The Russian Agriculture Ministry said Ankara's decision could lead to a complete cessation of imports of Russian wheat, corn, beans and rice to Turkey as well as a reorientation of supplies to other markets.

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    Tags:
    trade, Mehmet Simsek, Arkady Dvorkovich, Turkey, Russia
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