NEGOTIATORS FROM Brussels and Moscow have agreed a new system of export certification for plant products, averting a potential full-blown trade war.

At risk was 800m (560m) worth of EU plant exports to Russia.

 The problem arose last summer when Russian inspectors discovered western flower thrips in some consignments of EU plant products. This led to a trade ban on Denmark, Estonia, Germany and Holland.

Moscow also gave an Apr 1 deadline, after which it would block all EU plant exports. But this week a deal was signed to introduce a new harmonised certificate.