According to Syrian exporters, Russia will not be able to replace banned Turkish products without a regular transport agreement with Syria, which is able to ship the necessary volumes of fruits and vegetables to Russia.
An important advantage is the price of the products, Duba said. About 13 rubles for oranges, 9-10 rubles for mandarins, 18 rubles for lemons, and the cost of Syrian tomatoes will depend on the season – from 3 rubles to 17.5 rubles.
The main obstacle in supplying exports to the Russian market is logistics. Before the start of the military conflict in Syria, ships went directly to the ports of Kuban. Now ships launch from Tartus in Syria and stop at several destinations before arriving in Novorossiysk. The journey from Syria to Russia (through Cairo and then Egypt) takes 35 – 40 days, which is permissible for juice, oranges and mandarins, but it is not acceptable for tomatoes, for which the the optimal period for transportation is 5-7 days.
Duba said that the main advantage of Turkey is the daily communication with Russia, including ground transport.
With more effective logistics system, Syria would be able to better replace some of the now-banned Turkish products.
FruitNews article (Russian): http://www.fruitnews.ru/home-page/fruits/45128-siriya-otpravila-v-rossiyu-800-tonn-tsitrusovykh.html