Russia will no longer be buying Icelandic products, but the Foreign Minister is remaining steadfast behind taking part in sanctions against Russia for its activities in the Crimea and Ukraine.
The news comes in the wake of recent statements from Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to “order preparation of retaliatory measures against several non-EU European nations that have joined the European Union’s sanctions against Russia”, which would include Iceland.
This will mean Russian markets will no longer be open to lamb, fish and horse meat, and will be turned away from Russian ports. This has prompted Minister of Fisheries Sigurður Ingi Jóhannsson to call for an emergency meeting with Russia’s ambassador to Iceland, Anton V. Vasiliev.
There are numerous business interests at stake where Russia’s trade ban is concerned, most of them from the fishing industry – Russia bought 10% of Iceland’s fish exports last year. However, Kjarninn reports that Minister of Foreign Affairs Gunnar Bragi Gunnarsson remains decided that Iceland’s participation in the sanctions is “a matter of principle” and will not be reviewed.