Russia developed a package of sanctions in response to the recently introduced restrictions from the EU and USA. The plan provides for various measures - from mild to severe ones, presidential aide Andrei Belousov told Vesti. However, the official did not clarify what measures they would be exactly. According to him, revealing this information would be "the same as to reveal operational plans of the General Staff in case of war."
"I can not tell you what the plan contains. But I can tell you that the sanctions are distributed to all levels, from mildest to most severe ones," the official said.
"In fact, if it goes too far, there is a range of financial services that we will also be able to replace. Bankers will only thank us for that," he said.
According to the presidential aide, sanctions and responsive measures frightened Western businesses at a greater extent. "The reaction of Western business from Eastern Europe - from Poland, Lithuania, Estonia, Finland, as well as from Germany, from France, from Italy was very sharp," said Belousov.
Russian businesses reacted to the sanctions "with quiet interest." "But Western business got seriously scared and we started receiving all kinds of signals from Western businesses, who said that they wanted to stay on the Russian market," the official said.
According to European estimates, Europe's losses from Russia's sanctions amounted to about 40 billion euros. The measures affected mostly the countries that had close ties with Russia - Germany, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Poland, Estonia.
"Neither the first wave of sanctions, nor the second wave will be introduced just for the sake of punishing someone for something, to take revenge," said Belousov.
"If there is a need to answer, we have opportunities where we can do it to increase our own production. Certainly, it is cars. The automotive industry allows to increase the production of cars of imported brands," said the official, adding that Russia produces almost the entire line of global car brands.
"This also goes for some types of clothing," he said. "We have knitwear, for example. We have suits. We have quite suitable manufacturers, who work in cooperation with Italian producers, for instance. There are areas, where it is still hard to restrict anything - shoes, for example," he said.
As for the agricultural sphere, the presidential aide said that domestic producers would be able to increase supplies of the products that Russia currently imports.
"That's roughly 30 percent of beef. Of course, we will not cover all 30 percent, but we will be able to cover 10-15 percent with domestic production," the official said. According to him, there are no difficulties with poultry supplies either.
"We can quietly, without fuss, without any consequences for the internal market, for our customers, to give our manufacturers an opportunity to take advantage of what the Europeans and Americans gave us," he said.
"Now the market is quite stable. We do not see any manifestations of reactions to the Russian sanctions on the market, not even locally," he said.
Both Russia and Ukraine have been increasing their military presence on the border between the two countries lately. Russia warned Ukraine against any military scenarios