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Russia suspends publication of import-export data to avoid ‘speculation’ -Breaking


© Reuters. FILEPHOTO: Russia’s national flag is seen flying atop Russia’s embassy in Berlin. The invasion of Ukraine by Russia continues on April 5, 2022. REUTERS/Lisi Niesner

(Reuters) – Russia’s Customs Service has suspended temporarily publication of export/import data, in an effort to avoid errors and “speculation”, said the head of service on Thursday.

This will make it difficult for traders to evaluate the effects of the severe western sanctions on Russia, which were placed on February 24, when it sent troops into Ukraine as part of what it describes as a military special operation.

Federal Customs Service doesn’t publish statistics regarding imports and exports. I agree with this decision. I believe it’s justified to avoid misinformation, speculation and misinterpretations regarding imports. It is temporary,” Vladimir Bulavin, the chief of the service, told Interfax.

The import and export details for country’s most significant products were disclosed by the customs agency within the first 10 days each month.

Earlier, on Thursday, the service told Reuters, after being asked about the delay that the data they were interested in was not yet available. The service last released January data in March.

Maxim Oreshkin, a Kremlin adviser, said that Russian imports dropped by “tens to percent” during March because of logistical limitations and foreign company departures.

Russia is a leading exporter in oil, gas and metals as well as vegetable oils. Each year, Russia imports thousands of millions of dollars worth of coffee, bananas and citrus fruits. [METALS/RU] [AGS/RU]

The Russian Energy Ministry had suspended the publication of oil production and export statistics earlier this month. Meanwhile, data from the central bank on foreign trade were not made public.