Thursday, August 07, 2014

Will the EEU undermine Russia's retaliatory sanctions?

Just to follow up on that previous post, I wonder if the Russian ban on goods from the U.S. and Europe will soon become a moot point. On January 1, 2015, the Eurasian Economic Union is set to go into effect. The EEU is supposed to removal all trade barriers between the three member states: Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan.

So while Russia's ban on certain imports from the U.S. and EU is supposed to last for one year. In practice, Russians may be able to evade those bans in less than six months by importing goods to Kazakhstan or Belarus and then shipping them across the open border into Russia. Actually, that trick should already work. The customs union between those three countries is already in effect.