No “sanctioned goods” are allowed to be transported by Russian operators through EU territory by roads, the EU Commission has said in its fresh “additional guidance” on the transit of Russian goods. The document published on Wednesday comes amid tensions around the Russian Kaliningrad exclave. Lithuania had previously blocked the shipment of goods to the region via its territory to comply with EU sanctions against Russia.
Transit via rail is still allowed, according to the document, but only as long as the EU member states “perform effective controls.” The bloc’s nations should “check whether transit volumes remain within the historical averages of the last three years” as well as whether they reflect “the real demand for essential goods at the destination,” the guidelines say.
The transit of sanctioned military and dual use goods and technology is fully prohibited, the document says, adding that any “unusual flows or trade patterns” could potentially be suspected of giving “rise to circumvention” of anti-Russian sanctions.
The document specifically notes that the EU members “are obliged to prevent all possible forms of circumvention of EU restrictive measures.” The EU Commission also pointed to the “importance of monitoring the two-way trade flows between Russia and Kaliningrad” aimed at ensuring that “sanctioned goods cannot enter the EU customs territory.”