EU-Russia relations Russia: Officials concerned about impact of EU-Russia sanctions on toolmaking

Editor: Lisa Saller, Lisa Saller

The danger of damage to businesses is real, but the situation is fluid.

The friction between Europe and Russia could have a negative impact on tool shops.
The friction between Europe and Russia could have a negative impact on tool shops.
(Source: Culp)

Officials from Europe’s national die and mould associations have expressed concern over rising trade tensions between the EU and Russia, but they said the results this feud could have on the toolmaking industry are hard to predict at this time.

This summer, the EU announced a ban on shipments of arms and products for the oil industry to Russia, and a few days later Moscow struck back by saying it would block food and agricultural imports from the EU.

The ongoing Russia-Ukraine crisis has already slowed German machinery sales, but officials from Europe’s precision tooling associations have yet to see any damage to the businesses of their members.

The Portuguese tooling association Cefamol said its member shops have enjoyed a more than 30-year relationship with Russian companies, and the current difficulties could hurt future trade. “Even considering that Russia represents currently just 2% of its exports, Cefamol is certainly concerned about this situation,” the association said.

Any further steps are likely to be felt at the shop level, Cefamol explained. “At the moment, we have no information about problems for Portuguese companies, but possible economical restrictions on Russia and European Union businesses will certainly bring constraints on existing interactions with Russian companies [by] limiting ongoing projects, promotional activities or future trade.”

Industry officials in Finland said at the moment, no local companies have complained about the sanctions, and Finnish-Russian trade in tools is small. However, individual companies could suffer under a trade embargo, they added.

Many European shops are still waiting for more specifics about current and possible trade bans. The German Precision Tools Association noted that exactly what types of engineering goods are part of the EU sanctions is still unclear.