Benefits of investing in Russia far outweigh risks, declares minister
Itar-Tass, Mar 14
BBC Monitoring Former Soviet Union
Text of report by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS
Cannes, 14 March: Nowhere in Europe is entrepreneurship developing as rapidly as in Russia, Minister of Economic Development and Trade German Gref declared today, addressing a conference entitled “Investment in Russian Real Estate: Development of Regions” [actual title is “Investments In Russian Real Estate and Development: From Myth To Reality”]. The conference was held within the 17th international exhibition on investment in commercial real estate (MIPIM) [“Marche International des Professionnels d’Immobilier”], the world’s biggest exhibition of its kind, which opened on the Cote d’Azur today.
Last year Russia took clear first place for rate of economic growth amongst the G8 group of countries, the minister emphasized. A whole series of Russian companies are listed amongst the world’s biggest. Gazprom, for instance, more than doubled its capitalization and became the world’s eighth biggest company.
The Russian stock market expanded by 83 per cent last year, Gref continued. If you compare this with the level of risk from investment in Russia, the pluses clearly outweigh the minuses. It is no accident that the choice of investors from such countries as the USA, Germany, the Netherlands, Great Britain and a number of others has fallen on the Russian Federation.
The main competitive advantage which attracts investors to Russia, as they themselves acknowledge, is the size of the Russian market, with its 140m consumers whose incomes are increasing at 10-15 per cent per annum. The macroeconomic stability in the country is also important. It should not be forgotten either that Russia operates one of the most liberal tax regimes in Europe, the minister of economic development and trade stressed.
“However, nobody will bring their investment to us if we do not market ourselves both at home and to foreign investors themselves,” Gref noted. Representatives of about 30 Russian regions are attending this year’s MIPIM forum, the minister said.
Source: ITAR-TASS news agency, Moscow, in Russian 2030 gmt 14 Mar 06