Bill would ban Russian seafood imports

Legislation introduced by Alaska Republican Senators Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan would ban the import of all Russian Seafood into the United States in response to Russia’s 2014 ban of import of seafood from the U.S. and other western countries seafood products.

The U.S.-Russian Federation Seafood Reciprocity Act would impose a ban on the import of all Russian seafood products into the U.S. in retaliation for Russia’s ban on U.S. seafood imports.

“As Congress works on a sanctions package to deter Russia from invading Ukraine, it’s important that we explore all sectors of the Russian economy that we can influence, such as restricting imports of Russian seafood,” Murkowski said.

“Americans, and especially Alaskans, have faced a one-sided Russian embargo on our seafood since 2014, allowing Russia’s economy to benefit while U.S. seafood has been harmed,” Murkowski said. “I’m hopeful that after years of pushing this issue, this Congress and the Biden administration will finally agree to equalize the treatment of Alaska’s world class seafood.”

Most Americans would be astounded to learn that Russia has unfettered access to sell its seafood in the United States at the same time America’s fishermen and seafood processors have zero access to the Russian market,” Sullivan said.

Chris Barrows, president of Pacific Seafood Processors Association, said he is appreciative of the efforts of Alaska’s senators.

“Since Russia initiated its embargo, Alaska’s seafood producers have suffered unfairly by being locked out of key Russian seafood markets,” he said.