Interfax: Kremlin aide sees no major breakthrough in improving Russia’s business climate

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – December 16, 2013) Russia has not yet managed to achieve a radical breakthrough on the issue of improving its business climate, the Russian president’s aide on economic issues, Andrei Belousov believes.

“The euphoria from the nearly 20 percent advancement in the Doing Business rating passed about three hours after we found out the results,” Belousov said on Monday at the conference One Hundred Steps to a Favorable Investment Climate: Achievements and New Challenges organized by business daily Vedomosti.

He said there are other objective indicators that show there has not been a breakthrough yet.

“We have not achieved a radical breakthrough yet. Above all, the capital outflow indicator points to this,” Belousov said.

Annual capital outflows from Russia have amounted to $55 billion-$60 billion in the last two years and “will remain at about this level this year as well,” he said.

However, there has been some progress, such as the fact that “this outflow is acquiring ever more legal forms as direct investments,” he said. “But the amount [of the outflow] itself is critical for Russia,” Belousov added.

Commenting on foreign direct investment in Russia, Belousov said “we have reached a level of about $45 billion-$50 billion per year,” and the figure will be about $50 billion this year as well.