Afghanistan offers raisins for Russian oil — RT Business News


Afghanistan wants to import Russian crude oil and goods in exchange for its minerals, as well as raisins and medicinal herbs, Industry and Trade Minister Nuriddin Azizi told RIA Novosti on Friday.

“We can supply some of our minerals in exchange for imports from Russia, including for products and energy resources,” said Nuriddin, noting « In addition, we have, for example, dried fruits, raisins and medicinal herbs. »

The minister pointed out that Afghanistan has always supplied large volumes of raisins to Russia. “We can supply hundreds of tons of these products. For example, the prices of medicinal herbs are now very high and Russia needs these raw materials for medicine. And we can use them in the barter trade. We can supply raw materials to Russian factories, as we already do with China,” explained the Minister.

Earlier this week, Nuriddin said Kabul wanted to buy a million barrels of Russian crude or even more, noting that the government « likes to consider the barter option. »

The supply from Afghanistan is likely due to a shortage of hard currency in the country. After the Taliban takeover in August 2021, the United States blocked $7 billion in Afghan Central Bank foreign exchange reserves stored at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Another $2 billion has been frozen by the UK, Germany, the United Arab Emirates and other countries.

In May, the Afghan charge d’affaires in Russia, Jamal Nasir Garwal, had mentioned plans for negotiations with Moscow on the supply of Russian hydrocarbons. The diplomat stressed that the country is seeking to develop economic cooperation with Russia and is already in talks on business development and financing.

Data from global trade website The Observatory of Economic Complexity showed that in 2020 Russia’s exports to Afghanistan reached $151 million and imports were less than $3 million.

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