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Russia Bans Imports from 13 Dutch Dairy Firms

Russia has banned imports from 13 Dutch dairy companies for failing to meet sanitary requirements, a news report said Thursday.

The Federal Veterinary and Phytosanitary Inspection Service began inspections in November, which revealed that exports to Russia and other countries in the Russia-led Customs Union include ingredients from European companies lacking authorization to export to the Customs Union.

The Dutch companies had also held products in their storage facilities that were past their expiration date, the agency said, Interfax reported.

Including the 13 companies whose products have been banned, 64 Dutch companies were listed as certified exporters to Russia in 2009 under the guarantee of the Dutch veterinary service.

Last month the watchdog said Russia might also ban tulip imports from the Netherlands because of quality issues, RBC reported.

Russia banned dairy imports from Lithuania earlier this year in what many observers saw as an attempt to dissuade the former Soviet republic from developing trade relations with the European Union.

Relations between Russia and the Netherlands have been testy in recent months following the arrest of activists onboard the Dutch-registered Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise in September and the arrest and brief detention of Russian diplomat Dmitry Borodin in The Hague in October.

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