RPT: US Businesses Prefer No Sanctions On Russia As It Limits Commercial Freedom - AmCham


RPT: US Businesses Prefer No Sanctions on Russia as It Limits Commercial Freedom - AmCham

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 17th September, 2020) US companies do not like the sanctions' regime on Russia, as the restrictions affect the freedom to do business, but the sector has to comply with the regulations, Alexis Rodzianko, the president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia (AmCham), told Sputnik.

"Business does not like sanctions because business is affected directly. Sanctions affect the freedom to do business; the flexibility of doing business is restricted. Our business community obviously prefers when there are no sanctions. On the other hand, it is not a decision made by a business to have sanctions or not," Rodzianko said.

US businesses have no other option than to "work within those limitations," according to the executive.

Despite the regime of sanctions, there is still huge potential for US and Russian businesses to expand cooperation in many areas, the AmCham president noted.

"There is much business to be done as sanctions affect a very small percentage of total business and a lot of business gets done and a lot of opportunities arise. One example is in the civil aviation field, which is a major cooperation area. Also, if you look at sectors like consumer goods, US companies in Russia have done very well in this sector," Rodzianko said.

US companies are also interested in the localization of business in Russia if such a decision makes financial sense, the executive underlined.

"Localization is on the agenda pretty much for every major company in every significant sized country or region where these companies work. They will do as much as possible locally if it makes financial and business sense. To the extent that it makes business sense, financial sense, companies are happy to localize, it is in their own interest," the head of the chamber said.

Even though the political climate between the US and Russia has not been positive in recent years, some US companies do have plans to venture into the Russian market once the bilateral relations improve, according to the AmCham president.

"Looking ahead, Russia has great potential, it is a big market, it is a market that our companies consider a strategic or a key market. Of course, politics do get in the way and I've heard it said by many companies, that are not here that they have a plan somewhere about Russia, they are thinking about it, but they are waiting for better political weather," Rodzianko added.

As much as 80 percent of US businesses represented in Russia said that they had been impacted by the US sanctions on Moscow, while a fourth of those surveyed said the sanctions have put US businesses in an unfair position with the companies from other countries, according to a joint report by AmCham and Ernest and Young firm, released in July.