Russia looks for ways to soften impact of food import bans

MOSCOW Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:02am EDT

MOSCOW Aug 18 (Reuters) - Russia will allow imports from neighbouring Belarus and Kazakhstan of food processed from Western raw materials which fall under Moscow's embargo, Russian news agencies quoted Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich as saying.

Last week, Russia banned all meat, fish, dairy, fruit and vegetable imports from the United States, the European Union, Norway, Canada, and Australia for one year to retaliate against Western sanctions slapped on Moscow over the Ukraine crisis.

However, the government has struggled to control price rises, since some 50 percent of Russian consumption of fish, milk, beef and cheese had been previously met by imports. (Reporting by Dmitry Zhdannikov; Editing by Christian Lowe)