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DW: German politicians discuss easing anti-Russian sanctions — Germany suffers from them

Anti-Russian sanctions bring Germany monthly damage in the amount of $770 million, according to Deutsche Welle, referring to the calculations of economist Julian Hinz. Klaus Ernst, chairman of the Bundestag committee on economics, believes that sanctions are the wrong way because they did not change Moscow’s position and hurt German business.

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Recently in Berlin, leftist MP Klaus Ernst and the Eastern Committee of German Economy organized a joint roundtable, Deutsche Welle reports. At first glance, their cooperation may surprise, since the interests of the two sides rarely coincide, but they have something in common: the desire to lift the anti-Russian sanctions as soon as possible.

According to Klaus Ernst, who chairs the Bundestag committee on economics, sanctions are a “wrong tool” because they have not led to a change in Russia's position, and also harm German business.

According to the publication, according to the calculations of economist Julian Khints, the German economy is losing $770 million a month due to anti-Russian sanctions. At the same time, Hinz noted that the main reason for the decline in trade is the general atmosphere of uncertainty created by the sanctions. Another factor is the “extraterritoriality” of US sanctions, which means that countries that do not comply with US regulations regarding Russia may, in turn, be subject to Washington penalties.

Deutsche Welle notes that out of a thousand pages of the US global blacklist, 140 are dedicated to Russian citizens. “Theoretically, if you want to do business with a Russian company, you should check each time to see if anyone on the sanctions list owns more than 50 percent of the company’s shares,” says Chairman of the Eastern Committee of the German Economy Michael Harms.

Bundestag MP from the CDU / CSU party and former Minister of Transport of Germany Peter Ramsauer requires the government to gradually ease sanctions and greater political flexibility, the newspaper said. “Flexibility” means that the beginning of the lifting of sanctions should not coincide with the full implementation of the Minsk agreements.

According to Deutsche Welle, Ramsauer is not alone in his opinion. According to the deputy from the SPD party, Bernd Westphal, in the 21st-century peace in Europe is achieved by other means than sanctions, arms buildup, and separation. “We need to take the first step and look at how the Russian side will behave,” the publication quotes Westphalia. According to the idea of the politician, Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron should propose the gradual lifting of sanctions on the European agenda by 2020, when the Federal Republic of Germany will gain the presidency of the EU Council.

However, Angela Merkel does not want to hear about such proposals, notes Deutsche Welle.
During a visit to Berlin by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, the German Chancellor emphasized that sanctions can only be lifted if Crimea is returned to Ukraine.

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