transit of steel and ferrous metal products via Lithuania to
the Russian region of Kaliningrad is not a Lithuanian decision, but it has to
do with the EU sanctions for Russia, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius
"First of all, this
is not Lithuania's decision. These are European sanctions that came into force
on June 17, and railways are now applying the sanctions and they are notifying
their customers that as of June 17 sanctioned goods – steel and other goods
made from iron
ore –will no longer be taken via Lithuania, and that
this is being done in consultation with and in accordance with the European
Commission's guidelines," Lansbergis said on Monday ahead of the upcoming
meeting of the EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.
Information about the ban
has been available since mid-March as the ban part of the EU's fourth sanction package,
Lithuania's Customs Department says.
Adopted on March 15, the EU
sanction package includes restrictions on Russian steel and other
ferrous metal products under contracts concluded before June 17, and as of last
Saturday they could no longer be transported across EU territory, a spokeswoman
for the department said.
between Kaliningrad and the rest of Russia is not suspended or blocked. The
transit of passengers and goods not
sanctioned by the EU continues. Lithuania has not imposed any
unilateral, individual or additional restrictions on this transit. We have not
received any additional instructions and we are not taking any additional
action," Lina Laurinaityte-Grigiene
from the Customs Department told BNS.
She also pointed out that
the same ban will come into force on July 10 for cement, alcohol and other
products, on coal and other solid fossil fuels on
August 10, and also on Russian oil from December 5.