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23 Feb, 2024 05:34

Most Japanese companies stayed in Russia – survey

Those that have decided to maintain operations have done so due to favorable market conditions, according to Japan’s trade body  
Most Japanese companies stayed in Russia – survey

About 35% of Japanese companies operating in Russia continue doing business “as usual” despite Tokyo’s commitment to complying with Western sanctions, a survey by the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) revealed on Wednesday.   

JETRO polled 156 companies operating in Russia’s two biggest cities, Moscow and St. Petersburg, in early February. The share of companies that were doing “business as usual” had increased by 4% to 34.9%, the organization said, without naming the firms.  

Meanwhile, the number of companies that have fully or partially suspended their operations in Russia has decreased by 5.9% since JETRO’s previous survey carried out in May 2023.  

“Companies that continue to do business in Russia said that they decided to stay because of favorable market conditions, expectations for the future resumption of business between Japan and Russia, and expectations for the growth potential of the Russian market,” JETRO noted. 

At the same time, 25.4% of the companies surveyed reported having fully suspended their operations in Russia, representing a 9.2% increase from the previous study. Among the factors that influenced their decision the firms mentioned reputation risks, Western sanctions, and a change in approach taken by the companies’ headquarters towards Russia.   

Japan joined Western sanctions on Russia after the start of the Ukraine conflict in February 2022. However, Tokyo has continued to participate in Russian energy projects on Sakhalin Island due to their importance for Japan’s energy security.

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