Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 12
By Matanat Nasibova – Trend:
The proposal to introduce a temporary embargo on the export of timber from Russia will have a certain negative impact on the construction market of Azerbaijan, doctor of economic sciences, Professor Elshad Mammadov told Trend Feb. 12.
He was commenting on the relevant proposal by Chairperson of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation Valentina Matvienko.
He said that the adoption of such document from the point of view of the Russian economy would be reasonable, since a very high proportion of products associated with the Russian lumber industry is exported as raw materials.
“For the Russian economy, it would be advisable to process the timber and export finished products with higher added value,” he noted. “However, often the proposals voiced on the sidelines of Russian expert circles and in the structures of the Russian authorities aren’t reflected in the relevant regulatory documents. Therefore, if such a decision is made, I don’t rule out serious opposition from the Russian lobbyists and monopolists engaged in exporting forest raw materials.”
He noted that if such a decision is made, it will to some extent affect the Azerbaijani market, since Azerbaijan buys a large amount of building materials from Russia.
“I think in this situation, we should focus on suppliers from other countries, for example, Ukraine, Finland, Belarus,” he said. “Of course, these aren’t the most profitable options, given that Russian products in the construction segment are the most affordable in terms of price-quality ratio. For example, Finland exports forest products, but the level of their processing and, accordingly, the cost is higher. As for Ukraine and Belarus, firstly, there are no such volumes of forest production and there are higher costs from the point of view of transportation. We have no direct borders with Ukraine or Belarus, we don’t enter either the Eurasian Economic Union or the Customs Union. At the same time, we have a direct border with Russia and from a geographical point of view, shorter distances for supplies.”
The expert suggested that in the future, in order to maintain relations with the Russian goods producer, Azerbaijan could buy more goods in Russia with a high added value, that is, finished products, and not raw materials.