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Daily Dutch News in English

The Netherlands welcomes reopening of Russian market

Minister for Agriculture and Foreign Trade Henk Bleker has welcomed Russia’s decision, subject to conditions, to again allow the import of vegetables from the European Union.

On Wednesday 22 June 2011, the EU and Russia signed an agreement permitting the resumption of certified European vegetable imports.

‘It’s good news that the market for vegetables is open again,’ said Mr Bleker. ‘Dutch growers can now again sell their goods on the Russian market.’ The Russian market is important for Dutch vegetable growers. The Netherlands exports €200 million worth of fruit and vegetables to Russia every year.
Efforts rewarded

Mr Bleker is pleased that these exports can be resumed thanks to the efforts of the Netherlands and the European Commission. Some days after Russia’s decision to exclude European vegetables, Mr Bleker travelled to Russia for talks with his Russian counterpart, Elena Skrynnik, and the head of the Russian Federal Consumer Protection Service, Gennady Onishschenko.

The European Commission used the Dutch agreement as a basis for the European agreement. The conditions under which European vegetables may now again be exported to Russia are the same as those agreed by Mr Bleker and Ms Skrynnik on 9 June 2011.

To import vegetables, traders have to submit a certificate stating the origin, cultivation method, and inspecting organisation. Dutch growers and traders can obtain this certificate from the new Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority.