When other countries saw that Russia is a rival, they immediately imposed restrictions under various pretexts, Russian President Vladimir Putin said during his annual Q&A marathon.
“If there was no Crimea, they would think up something else. Sanctions made us use our brains,” he said.
Russian president noted that the sanctions, of course, affected the Russian economy, but the external economic situation, including the fall in oil and energy prices, had more impact on it.
According to Putin, he sanctions also have a positive effect.
“As a result of restrictions, the country has restored competence in many areas, including missile production, pharmaceutics, mechanical engineering, agriculture and other spheres. Russia is looking for sales markets,” he said.