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Moscow Allows Sanction-Busting Imports

Moskva News Agency

Russia on Friday allowed for hundreds of categories of goods to be imported without the agreement of the intellectual property owner in order to bypass restrictions imposed over the Ukraine conflict.

Among the list published by the Industry and Commerce Ministry are Apple and Samsung smartphones, major car brands, game consoles, and spare parts used in various industries. 

There are also everyday consumer products, such as cutlery and cosmetics. 

"According to this document, civil liability is waived in cases where products are imported by importers bypassing official distribution channels," the ministry said. 

Many of these goods are produced by companies that decided to exit the Russian market after Moscow sent troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Others, such as car parts, were banned by international sanctions on Moscow over its military campaign. 

This mechanism will allow Russia to avoid shortages of goods that it is currently unable to produce itself. 

The ministry, however, said that this is not an "authorization to import or distribute counterfeits."

President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly said that Russia's economy has weathered the sanctions well, but economists believe that the worst economic impact is still to come.

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