Russia, Turkey to lift trade restrictions

16:24 | 04/05/2017 Cooperation

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdogan agreed to lift restrictive measures in mutual trade and further work together to resolve the Syrian conflict on Wednesday during a meeting in Sochi, Russia.

Vladimir Putin last year ordered that the government normalise trade ties with Turkey - Photo:

"Now we can say with full confidence that the process of restoration of Russian-Turkish relations has been completed, and we are returning to the normal interaction between partners." Putin said in a joint press conference following the meeting.

In this context, the two countries have agreed on a complex solution for problems related to restrictions, as "all restrictions destroy the economy and harm our producers", the president said.

According to Putin, restrictions in all trade areas will be lifted except for the ones on tomato imports from Turkey, which will remain for the time being until Russian agricultural producers recover relevant investment and the tomato growing industry is on track.

"As dear President Putin said, this (tomatoes) is a temporary measure to which we have agreed. As far as other issues are concerned, we have also come to an agreement. So we can say that the normalization period has been completed." Erdogan said.

The ban on visa-free travel of Turks will also continue for the moment, due in particular to "the necessity to strengthen cooperation between our special services in condition of an increase of the terrorist threat", Putin added.

Russia introduced bans on many commodities amid escalated tensions between the two countries after Turkey shot down a Russian warplane near the Syrian border in November 2015. In Response, Turkey imposed a prohibitive import tariff on Russian exports of wheat, maize and sunflower oil, of which Turkey is a major buyer...

Theo Xinhuanet