Long-Term Strategy Needed for Success in Russia: German-Russian Chamber of Commerce

Michael Harms, Chairman of the German-Russian Chamber of Commerce, is bullish on doing business in Russia, but encourages foreign investors to take the long view of working in the country. What are some of the general challenges of working on the Russian market? There are both current issues and strategic challenges. Since about 2009 and the financial crisis, the Russian economy has been largely…

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Doing Business in Russia: German Companies Positive About the Future

According to a survey on the Russian business climate carried out by the German-Russian Chamber of Commerce in September 2013, two-thirds of German companies working in Russia remain affected by trade restrictions despite Russia’s accession to the W.T.O. Even though import duties have fallen from between 7.8 and 10 percent, the Russian government introduced tariff and non-tariff trade barriers to protect domestic industry immediately…

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Diamond Age Russia Fund: Monthly Letter to Investors – May 2013

In May, the all-Russia RTS Index sold off another -3.67%, on the back of the overall continued emerging market and commodity weakness, amplified by the Russia and CIS-related storm caused by the unlawful expropriation of investor assets in Cyprus. As the Investment Advisor reported in previous months, although the Fund…

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Russia’s Dull Heat of the Technological Revolution

I noted in my last blog that Russia had imprisoned hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs and that it finally needed to start trusting its own people. And lo! President Vladimir Putin’s speech at the annual St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday June 21, 2013, included an admission that under current laws, many would not be in jail at all, talk about…

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Time for Common Sense

On June 18, 2013, President Putin warned that government revenues would be less than previously expected and that the budget policy for 2014-2016 had to be planned accordingly. He also said that while revenues from natural resources were decreasing, financing from other industries was so far limited. In its annual review of the Russian economy, the International Monetary Fund has just…

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Russia: A Failed Tourist Mecca

On March 15, 2013, the Financial Times published an article on “Moscow’s new art centers — A tour of the hotspots of a creative renaissance that could lift Moscow’s profile as a cutting-edge destination.” The article highlights the capital city’s edgy art galleries and creative hubs and how they should help the city with its plan to boost international tourists from around 4.5 million a year now…

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Goldman Sachs’ Mission Impossible

In the third quarter of 2012, the economy chalked up its 55th straight quarter of growth and surprised analysts on the upside by growing 7.1 percent. The economy has apparently stabilized at 5 to 6 percent per annum recently, but the Finance Ministry reckons that the growth rate could eventually rise to 7 to 8 percent. Although no new taxes have been introduced, the tax take is…

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