Apple not ditching Russian market - retailers

Reuters/Yuya Shino
America’s Apple is not halting deliveries to Russia, according to several representatives of retailers and operators with direct knowledge of the matter. Russian media had reported the company was stopping sales in the country.

To date, no companies have received any official notice that Apple is suspending deliveries to Russia, TASS reported, citing sources from several of Apple’s biggest distributors in Russia.

Russia’s second-biggest mobile device retailer, Svyaznoy, confirmed there was no break in supply.

“Svyaznoy regularly receives goods from Apple Rus. The next is a major delivery to our warehouse before the end of this week. The termination of supply isn’t a question, they continue in accordance with our agreements and partners,” Maria Zaikina, a representative of the electronics retailer, told TASS on Monday.

VimpelCom, one of Russia’s largest mobile phone retailers, also said that all Apple deliveries are continuing as normal. Apple doesn’t have any official stores in Russia, so most of the products and services are carried out through accredited retailers, the biggest being Apple Rus, a subsidiary that handles sales in Russia.

Russia is one of the biggest markets for iPhones, iPads, Macbooks, and software. The Cupertino, California tech giant has had to significantly raise prices in Russia over the past few months due to the rapid volatility of the ruble. The cost of the iPhone 6 increased by 35 percent and the iPhone 6 plus increased by 32 percent.

READ MORE: Shopping frenzy, social media fuss and jokes in Russia as ruble collapses

Apple halted sales of its products in Crimea to comply with US sanctions banning economic activity with the region.

The US introduced the sanctions on the basis that Crimea is still part of Ukraine, and not Russia. Other major American companies, such as Google and PayPal, have also pulled the switch on business in Crimea.