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Business

Russia, Ukraine trade relations continue despite war – DTI

Louella Desiderio - The Philippine Star
Russia, Ukraine trade relations continue despite war â DTI
A demonstrator holding a placard reading "No to war" protests against Russia's invasion of Ukraine in central Saint Petersburg on February 24, 2022. Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Thursday, killing dozens and triggering warnings from Western leaders of unprecedented sanctions. Russian air strikes hit military installations across the country and ground forces moved in from the north, south and east, forcing many Ukrainians flee their homes to the sounds of bombing.
AFP / Sergei MIKHAILICHENKO

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Trade and Industry said the Philippines’ trade and commercial relations with Russia and Ukraine would continue despite the ongoing conflict between the two countries.

“We continue commercial relations with Russia, Ukraine and the West,” Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said in a Viber message to reporters yesterday.

He also said there are no changes on the pace of the Philippines-Russia Joint Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation, which serves as the mechanism to improve bilateral economic relations between the two countries.

He said the impact of the hostilities between Russia and Ukraine on the Philippine economy would depend on how long the conflict would last.

Earlier, he said he expects minimal impact on Philippine trade with Russia and Ukraine from the conflict, but noted there would be disruption in prices and the supply chain of key commodities if the crisis worsens.

He said Ukraine is ranked as the Philippines’ 40th trading partner, with trade amounting to around $200 million.

Meanwhile, the Philippines’ trade with Russia is around $2 billion.

Lopez said the uncertainties from the ongoing conflict can affect major economies’ production, inflation and trade, and eventually impact trade partners like the Philippines.

“The conflict has started to disrupt commodity prices,” he said.

After Russia launched an attack on Ukraine, global oil prices immediately reacted, rising above $100 a barrel before subsiding to around $92 as the US announced there are no plans for economic sanctions to cover Russia’s energy transactions.

Aside from oil, Lopez said other commodities that could be affected are wheat, aluminum, platinum, nickel, and copper.

“But the rising prices of nickel and copper can benefit us, being a major exporter of these minerals,” he said.

Earlier, Trade Undersecretary Ruth Castelo said consumers are not expected to immediately feel the impact of the ongoing conflict on the prices of basic goods.

She said the DTI has not received new requests to change prices of basic goods due to the rising price of fuel.

She also said prices of basic goods are being validated and if the price is seen to be too high for the consumers, the DTI negotiates with manufacturers to temper the increase.

DEPARTMENT OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY

RUSSIA

UKRAINE

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