Closing the Gap with “Turkey”
Turkey’s food exports to Russia surged over the first nine months of the year, with white meat exports, poultry and seafood increasing by 447 percent, Agriculture Minister Mehdi Eker has stated.
“Turkey’s share of Russia’s food imports increased tremendously in the first nine months of the year compared with the same period last year. We predict a further increase next year,” Eker said.
Turkey is a major supplier of food and agricultural produce to Russia, having posted $1.68 billion in trade last year.
After the United States and the European Union began imposing sanctions on Russia for its role in the conflict in Ukraine, Russia retaliated with restrictions on the importation of food from the EU and other Western countries in August. The restrictions created big opportunities for Turkey and Latin American countries such as Brazil, which increased food exports to Russia.
In the first nine months of the year, Turkey’s exports to Russia were valued at $4.5 billion, with the main export products being textiles, yarn, fabric, manufactured goods, vegetables and fruit, according to official data from the Economy Ministry.
No Empty shelves here, Mr. Obama
Eker also said the rise in inflation rates should not be seen as a direct result of the rise in food prices.
In October, despite the market expectation of 1.78 percent, the consumer price index (CPI) went up to 1.90 percent. As a result, the inflation rate also went up from 8.86 to 8.96 percent compared to the previous month. The annual increase in producer prices has reached double digits at 10.1 percent.
The increase in food prices has played a significant role in the rise of inflation, according to economists.
“The share of food is around 25 percent in the inflation basket. The problem mainly results from the gap between the producer price and the consumer price,” Eker said, adding that the government had established a committee to explore the reasons behind the divergence.
Western sanctions are aimed at key individuals in government and key industry. It is President Putin’s so-called “reverse sanctions,” his Russian sanctions against the import of Western products that are driving up the cost of consumer goods. So, how are everyday Russians coping with inflation? This video report by the Moscow Times newspaper begins to explore that question.