Buy Greek Russians urged

A nationwide “Help Greece!” campaign has kicked off urging Russians to buy anything that's Greek. This is to contribute to the rescue of the debt ridden economy.

Rossotrudnichestvo – the Russian Federal Agency for international humanitarian cooperation – launched its action on the 191st anniversary of Greek independence.

The agency not only calls for Russians to choose Greek foodstuffs, like olive oil and wine, but will also organize various fairs and presentations to promote Greek resorts and real estate.

“We call on our people to show solidarity with the Greek people and to buy more Greek products,” Georgy Muradov, deputy head at Rossotrudnichestvo told Business RT.

“We have calculated that if each Russian spends during a year 3-4 thousand roubles (Ђ100) on Greek goods it will give the Greek economy €15-€18 billion,” Muradov said.

Though the sum isn’t great at all on the scale of the Greek troubles, such a help “is likely to produce emotional support as many people in Greece are in the doldrums,” said Vladimir Solodukhin, managing director of the Brokercreditservice financial corporation.

The reaction from the public has been mixed. Some people on twitter have applauded the initiative saying it's very creative and have encouraged their friends to join in. Others ask why the helping hand is limited to Greece and what about buying Spanish Rioja or Portuguese salted cod. And also some sceptics say Russia has enough of its own problems to focus on.

Last month Russia’s monopoly Gazprom said it was bidding for a stake in the Greek public gas supply corporation DEPA, where the Greek government holds a 65%. According to expert calculations, Russia may spend around $1.5 billion on the deal.