Russland: Metropolitan Hilarion believes prolongation of sanctions not harmful for Russia

Food embargo, which Russia prolonged to the end of 2018 will help develop the country's agriculture while European and American sanctions gave Russia a chance to develop its own industry, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, head of the Synodal Department for External Church Relations, said on the Church and the World program on Rossiya-24 (VGTRK) television channel. In early July the EU Council prolonged economic restrictions against Russia for six months. Brussels associate this term with entire fulfillment of Minsk agreements on Ukraine. Moscow responded by prolongation of food embargo till December 31, 2018. Besides, the Senate of the US Congress on June 15 approved of a draft suggesting new sanctions against Russia.

"We live in such a country that should not be afraid of such sanctions. We have enormous natural, human and material resources. If we depend on our foreign partners, it is rather a deficiency, which we should correct, than a circumstance we should complain of," the hierarch said. Metropolitan Hilarion reminded of Patriarch Kirill's words said in autumn 2015, who paraphrasing Walther, noted that "if there had not been sanctions, they should have been invented", as Russia's riches and colossal resources allow it to do everything itself, except growing tropic fruit. "In the 1990s we could witness to another misbalance when people took money out of the country, invested it in foreign economies and foreign resources, when we received goods from abroad in change for raw materials. We should overcome this situation and I hope sanctions will help us," Metropolitan Hilarion said.

He believes Russian equivalents of foreign goods can satisfy even most sophisticated tastes and have one important preference - they will not spoil during distant transportation. "We'd better grow our own. If we had not learned to do it before sanctions, today we have a wonderful chance to produce fresh, tasty, healthy and clean products that we would not have to deliver from foreign countries," the metropolitan said. (Quelle:, 17. Juli 2017)