Almost two thirds (65%) of American companies operating in Russia consider the country to be a strategic market for their business, while almost a quarter (24%) think of Russia as a key market, a surveyby the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia (AmCham Russia) shows.
According to RIA news agency, the study was presented at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). It was based on a survey on the prospects for direct investment and bilateral trade between Russia and the United States among 72 American companies in April.
About 92% of the companies surveyed expect their Russian business to grow in the next three years. However, most of them (78%) believe this growth will be slow.
39% of American companies surveyed have their own production in Russia. Among the manufacturing companies from the chemical industry, production of FMCG goods (fast moving consumer goods, fast-turning consumer goods) and industrial products, 93% of companies answered affirmatively. At the same time, the majority of them (71%) plan to increase the capacity of existing production sites, the poll showed.
Amcham expects Russia-U.S. economic cooperation, including revenue of the U.S. businesses which operate in Russia, to continue growing in 2018 despite the tense political environment.
“The results in 2017 were better than in 2016. It was a good year and many companies experienced double-digit growth of their business in Russia, and so far 2018 looks even set to top that. The relations have two sides, the business relationship continues to be good and healthy, and the political relations continue to be challenging and we certainly hope that our diplomats do what they can to fix that side of it,” Alexis Rodzianko, president and CEO of AmCham Russia, said on Friday at a panel session covering Russia-U.S. business dialogue at the St. Petersburg event.
Russia has been hit by several rounds of U.S. sanctions since 2014, with economic and political tensions further escalating this year over Kremlin’s meddling in U.S. elections and what Washington has called Russia’s “malign activities.” In early April, the U.S. Treasury imposed the latest set of measures against a number of companies, businessmen and Kremlin officials.