February 20, 2024

Russia Faces Banana Deficit


Russia Faces Banana Deficit
Bananas not being exported to Russia.  AMISOM Public Information, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Russian officials have slammed Ecuadorian exporters with certification suspensions after claiming to find them guilty of trade violations. Meduza reported that the official reason for these suspensions was the detection of the "polyphagous humpback fly," a species quarantined from import into Russia and the EU, in bananas imported from Ecuador. Unofficially, the suspensions may be the result of an arms exchange deal made in January between the United States and Ecuador. 

Last month, Ecuadorian president Daniel Noboa agreed to an exchange with the US: swapping $20 million worth of Soviet or Russian-made military equipment for modern equivalents. In turn, the United States Department of State will transfer the Russian/Soviet equipment to the Ukrainian Army.

On February 1, Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, made a statement in which she reminded President Noboa that the arms had been given to Ecuador under the assumption that it would not be transferred to another party without Russia's permission. The suspension of banana importation licenses occurred on the same day. 

Hope is not lost for banana sellers and consumers of Russia: bananas from India, China, Indonesia, and Brazil continue to flow in

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