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Country Highlights

Russia: Opportunities and Challenges for Foreign Business

Despite geopolitical tensions, Russia remains a lucrative market for foreign businesses given its vast natural resources, rising consumer class and skilled workforce.

Russia has the largest natural gas reserves in the world. Opportunities exist across the oil and gas value chain for exploration firms, equipment suppliers, logistics providers as well as trading houses. Renewable energy is also an emerging area for investors.

Russia has over 100 million hectares of arable land and agri-business is a priority sector for the government. Opportunities exist in grain production, dairy farming, meat processing among others.

Russia’s tech business ecosystem is expanding swiftly with skilled developers, engineers and computer scientists. Opportunities exist for providing services to Russian startups and multinationals.

However— foreign businesses also encounter multiple regulatory, operational and political risks in the market of Russia.  Frequent regulatory changes make long-term planning difficult and arbitrary implementation of rules raises costs.

Pervasive corruption and lack of transparency in bureaucratic processes increases the cost of doing business. Geopolitical tensions and associated sanctions risk disrupting operational stability and supply chains.

Even after these challaneges— Russia remains an attractive emerging market with business opportunities in energy, agriculture and technology if risks are mitigated properly. For example— in energy— international oil majors are investing billions in new LNG projects as Russia aims to double gas exports by 2035. Foreign engineering firms also see opportunities in modernizing Russia’s oil and gas infrastructure.

In agriculture, opportunities exist in grain exports, dairy, meat and produce. Russia plans to invest $8.3 billion by 2024 to boost farm output and reduce dependence on imports. However, non-tariff barriers and regulatory changes impact planning.

The technology sector is growing rapidly. Moscow is a top European hub for startups in— AI, blockchain, cybersecurity and cloud computing. Venture capital funding tripled over the last decade. However— frequent policy changes and stringent data localization requirements increase compliance costs.

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Featured Reports

Understand the macroeconomic situations that affect the global positioning of countries.

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