Treasury Strategy & Transformation
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East European Focus: The Retail & Consumer Industry in Russia and CIS

The Retail & Consumer Industry in Russia and CIS

by Nick Page, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (UK)

In recent months, the impact of the financial crisis on countries around the world has become clearer. Some political leaders and economists are reporting evidence of the so-called green shoots of recovery. At first glance Russia does not appear to be amongst the leaders in the recovery, having experienced a substantial fall in economic activity year-on-year. However, the last quarter gives reason for measured optimism with improvements reported in industrial output, and stabilisation of unemployment. The more optimistic are now forecasting that Russia will be back on a growth path at the end of 2009 or by the first quarter of 2010.

In the last ten years, Moscow has developed from a retail nightmare to a retail paradise; smart trendy boutiques now occupy premises that in the Soviet days were bakeries and bookshops.

The ring road encircling the city of Moscow is now home to many shopping centres (or malls) where only ten years ago the vast Russian wilderness appeared to begin. Our focus on the retail sector has contributions from experts in our London and Moscow offices.

As those familiar with investing in Russia will know, Cyprus is a near mandatory stopover for investment passing in and out of the country. But many people know surprisingly little about Cyprus and its economy; we have an article that provides readers with some background on this strategically situated island in the Mediterranean.