According to RIA Novosti, trade turnover between Russia and the Netherlands has experienced a significant decline of 200% compared to the previous year. In July, mutual trade between the two countries dropped threefold to €620 million ($662 million), reaching its lowest level since 2015, based on Dutch customs data.
The import of Russian goods to the Netherlands decreased by 14% month-on-month in July, amounting to €419 million. This marks a decline of 250% compared to the same period last year. Conversely, exports of goods from the Netherlands to Russia increased by 7% in July, reaching €201 million. However, on an annual basis, these exports have fallen by nearly 50%.
This decline in trade has resulted in a significant year-on-year decrease of more than 400% in the Dutch trade deficit with Russia, reaching €218 million. This is the lowest level since October 2020.
Earlier this year, Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reported a 38% drop in the value of Dutch goods exports to Russia in 2022. This decline was largely seen in the sales of semiconductors and chips, transport equipment and machinery, as well as flowers and plants. On the other hand, the import value of goods from Russia increased by 13%, mainly driven by higher fuel prices.
The continuous decrease in Dutch exports to Russia can be attributed to the sanctions imposed on Moscow by the Western allies in response to its military operation in Ukraine. Since February 2022, the EU has implemented multiple rounds of sanctions against Russia, including asset freezes, restrictions on the country’s financial sector, trade embargoes, and measures targeting individuals and state-owned companies.
Among the restrictions imposed by the EU are bans on imports of iron and steel products, coal, wood, and cement from Russia. Additionally, imports of mineral fuels from Russia have been increasingly restricted, partly due to a price cap on Russian oil and petroleum products.
The impact of these sanctions and trade restrictions is evident in the declining trade between Russia and the Netherlands. The year-on-year decline of 200% reflects the challenges faced by businesses in both countries due to these trade limitations.
As the trade deficit continues to widen, it is clear that both Russia and the Netherlands are affected by the changing dynamics of their economic relationship. The sanctions have disrupted traditional trade routes and have forced businesses to seek alternative markets or sources for their products.
It remains to be seen how the trade relationship between Russia and the Netherlands will evolve in the future. The effectiveness and longevity of the sanctions, as well as the ability of businesses to adapt to the changing landscape, will significantly influence the direction of trade between the two countries.
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