Business and Trade in Russia

Russia ended 2004 with its sixth straight year of growth, averaging 6.5% annually since the financial crisis of 1998. Although high oil prices and a relatively cheap ruble are important drivers of this economic rebound, since 2000 investment and consumer-driven demand have played a noticeably increasing role.

Real fixed capital investments have averaged gains greater than 10% over the last five years, and real personal incomes have realized average increases over 12%. Russia has also improved its international financial position since the 1998 financial crisis, with its foreign debt declining from 90% of GDP to around 28%. Strong oil export earnings have allowed Russia to increase its foreign reserves from only $12 billion to some $120 billion at yearend 2004. These achievements, along with a renewed government effort to advance structural reforms, have raised business and investor confidence in Russia's economic prospects.

10% of Russia's GDP comes from mining and extractive industries producing coal, oil, gas, chemicals, and metals with a turnover of $1.408 trillion in 2004. There are over 71.83 million people employed in Russia and it only has a unemployment rate of 8.3%.

Industries in Russia are made up out of a complete range of mining and extractive industries producing coal, oil, gas, chemicals, and metals; all forms of machine building from rolling mills to high-performance aircraft and space vehicles; defense industries including radar, missile production, and advanced electronic components, shipbuilding; road and rail transportation equipment; communications equipment; agricultural machinery, tractors, and construction equipment; electric power generating and transmitting equipment; medical and scientific instruments; consumer durables, textiles, foodstuffs and handicrafts.

Moscow has the highest concentration of billionaires in the world after New York.

 



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