By Alice Seeley
President Joe Biden issued an executive order on March 11 banning U.S. imports of key Russian products and exports of high-end goods to Russia, including seafood, alcohol, nonindustrial diamonds, and any other products of Russian Federation origin.
President Biden’s order also bans the export of high-end American products such as expensive watches, cars, and clothing to Russia. The order will block more than $1 billion in Russian revenues, while the export ban is valued at nearly $550 million per year. This order is part of a move by America to revoke normal trading relations with Russia.
This ban will not have much impact on the USA industry as Russia provided less than 1% of U.S. vodka imports in December, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the U.S. Federal statistics reports show that less than 2% of U.S. seafood imports by volume comes from Russia.
Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) applauded President Biden stating, “To me, this was an opportunity to right a wrong.”
Sullivan said this action should have been taken a long time since Russia has banned the import of Alaskan seafood and all food products from the United States since 2014.
The ban on Russian seafood has seen support from environmental organizations such as Oceana, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting the world’s oceans. Oceana’s Vice-President, Beth Lowell, stated that Russian fisheries have “limited monitoring and environmental oversight, yet the U.S. imported over $1.2 billion worth of Russian seafood last year.”
This order revoked Russia’s “most favored nation” status in coordination with the European Union and Group of Seven countries.