In recent years, the Russian economy has witnessed significant expansion in retail, telecommunications, and real estate development. Incomes are rising, and consumer financing is expanding, helping the country to survive the economic storm better than all the other export-dependent nations. The foreign business world is beginning to warm to Russia as an investment destination as the market matures and free-market policies are preferred over protectionist measures. Despite its progress, there are still significant hurdles to conducting business in this varied and famously difficult economy. And with recent happenings, companies have been withdrawing their business with Russia.
Since Russia invaded Ukraine, international corporations have been compelled to reconsider their relationships with Russia. Some, like McDonald’s, PepsiCo, and Shell, had formed long-term partnerships with the country and were confronted with untangling convoluted accords. Many Western corporations have begun to withdraw their assets, liquidate outlets, and halt sales in Russia. Others, after first adopting precautionary precautions, have altered their intentions and chosen to leave the country entirely.
Hundreds of businesses, ranging from apparel giants like Nike to media services like Netflix, have opted to terminate connections with Russia and cease operations. Adidas and Nestlé are the most recent corporations to halt business in Russia. In March, H&M, which has over 170 outlets in Russia, halted sales. Mastercard will prohibit Russian bank cards from being used in other countries. McDonald’s is selling its Russian operations to a local licensee as part of its full departure strategy. Starbucks is shutting 130 of its locations in Russia, where it employs around 2,000 people. Amazon Web Services has ceased accepting new cloud computing clients. Microsoft announced a halt on new product and service sales in Russia.
The decision to close their outlets in Russia was made to indicate their displeasure with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The operations are ceasing, both in number and intensity, as the Russians face the social consequences of these commercial relationships being severed. With both feet in the water, the corporate sector has been embroiled in a worldwide geopolitical struggle with a completely new power, which might have a big influence on how wars are fought—and peace is negotiated—in the coming times.
Apart from this, Transparency International’s 2020 Corruption Perceptions Index ranked Russia 129th out of 179 countries, tying it with Azerbaijan, Malawi, and Gabon. It is entirely up to you if you want to actively engage in Russia, although it is not always simple. The Russian government has a history of placing international energy corporations under pressure to consolidate control over hydrocarbon reserves. Emerging markets are among the most likely venues to generate gains that exceed developed markets. Foreign investors have frequently encountered difficulties as a result of the Russian bureaucracy. While Russia promises strong profits, it is controlled by energy corporations, regulation is still in its early stages at best, and political risks are higher than elsewhere. This is a prominent element of investing in Russia. Both the dangers and the possible benefits are substantial.