Doing Business in Russia - COVID 19 Challenges and Opportunities

Friday, 28 May 2021

Athens, 28 May 2021 | The opportunities that the Russian market offers to Greek enterprises, were presented during the webinar: "Doing Business in Russia - COVID 19 Challenges and Opportunities", organized on Thursday, May 27, by Enterprise Greece, Greece’s national trade & investment agency, in collaboration with the Office of Economic and Commercial Affairs of the Greek Embassy in Moscow.

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Doing Business in Russia - COVID 19 Challenges and Opportunities

Athens, 28 May 2021 | The opportunities that the Russian market offers to Greek enterprises, were presented during the webinar: "Doing Business in Russia - COVID 19 Challenges and Opportunities", organized on Thursday, May 27, by Enterprise Greece, Greece’s national trade & investment agency, in collaboration with the Office of Economic and Commercial Affairs of the Greek Embassy in Moscow.


The participation of the Greek business community was impressive, with 230 registered participants - demonstrating the interest of Greek exporters for the Russian market. Apart from the traditional ties, Russia represents an important trading partner for Greece with significant purchasing power. This mainly is attributed the sizeable Russian consumer base and their preference for Greek products.

The advantages of Russian market, and the respective growth potential of Greek exports in the clothing, pharmaceuticals, metals, wine and processed or frozen foods sectors present a great opportunity.

The speakers focused on procedures for market entry, consumer ethics and best business practices within the Russian market. Emphasis was given to the dynamics of the food, catering, HORECA and building materials sectors. Other topics included: the need to develop promotional programs, participate in international exhibitions and establish reliable partnerships with local partners.

To further strengthen trade and support Greek enterprises to do business in the Russian market, Enterprise Greece organizes the national participation in the Moscow International Fashion Trade Show Moscow "CPM" (Collection Première Moscow). Different product groups are represented including clothing, footwear, and accessories, and provides various other services to Greek exporters.

In her opening remarks, the Executive Director and Member of the Board of Enterprise Greece, Ms. Betty Alexandropoulou said: “Enterprise Greece is here to support all Greek enterprises that wish to export their products globally.  Today’s event is particularly important as Russia is a country with which we share common roots at a cultural, religious, and historical level. In the field of trade, Russia represents a market with significant purchasing power – not only because of the special preference of the Russians for Greek products, but also because of the large Greek community living in Russia”. Ms. Alexandropoulou briefly referred to the various tools and services that Enterprise Greece provides, to support Greek export companies.

Τhe Head of Economic and Commercial Affairs Office at the Greek Embassy in Moscow, Mr. Christos Farmakis stated that: “The Russian market is important for Greek exports given its size (142 million) but also because Russia together with Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan form a single customs zone, the Eurasian Economic Union”.

Moreover, Russia enjoys close economic ties with other Central Asian countries such as Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan. The Russian countermeasures following 2014, have affected Greek exports (dairy, fresh fruits and vegetables, fish) but prospects for other products are deemed positive, given certain conditions, while in 2020 due to the pandemic, Greek exports amounted to 163 million euros. The conditions mentioned before are the knowledge of the market, compliance with the Phytosanitary /technical specifications and thorough planning.

The Russian market requires commitment it is demanding market that is unsuitable for short-term and opportunistic exports. International competition is strong and Russian consumers are aware of the international supply. There is a positive attitude towards Greek products due to the large presence of Russian tourists in Greece, while at the same time, the Greek community in Russia is a significant one. In conclusion, it is extremely important to develop a series of promotional activities, participate in international exhibitions and cooperate with reliable local partners.

Greek enterprises in the agri-food sector, could benefit by the import substitution policy by the Russian Government. And they could do so, by making investments aiming to facilitate their presence in the Russian market but also expand to other markets of interest. The Office of Economic and Commercial Affairs in Moscow. in cooperation with Enterprise Greece and other organizations, remains at the disposal of all interested companies, to support their export efforts".

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