BRUSSELS, December 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Russia's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) will spur an increase in mutual Russian-European investment, and European companies should look East to the Russian market for new sources of growth. These were key themes addressed by Kirill Dmitriev, Chief Executive Officer of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, in remarks delivered at the EU-Russia Industrialists Roundatable today. The Roundtable was held as part of the EU-Russia Summit in Brussels.
Russia's expected accession to the WTO will give a sizeable boost to the country's GDP growth rate, Mr. Dmitriev said. He expects industrial production to rise on increased international sales as Russia further integrates into the global economy.
Mr. Dmitriev said:
"We expect a rise in mutual cross-border investments given that WTO membership will remove trade barriers and barriers to investment. In many industries Europe is fully saturated, and companies on the continent need to seek out new sources of growth. The challenge is further complicated by huge sovereign debt burdens in many European states. Russia, by contrast, has massive growth potential and some of the strongest macroeconomic fundamentals of any country globally. It is natural then that we are seeing more European companies coming to Russia for growth they cannot get at home."
Kirill Dmitriev will also participate in a meeting chaired by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to discuss deepening cooperation between Russia and the EU in areas including trade and investment. He said:
"We are awaiting a breakthrough in relations with Europe. In the past the EU has sometimes hindered inbound Russian investment, but in the new economic environment with Europe facing economic headwinds they need to understand that barriers need to be removed and welcome Russian investment in the EU as well as European investment in Russia."
About the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF)
The Russian Direct Investment Fund was established in June 2011. RDIF will be capitalized with USD 10 billion in Russian government funds over the next five years and is charged with making equity investments that generate strong returns, primarily in Russia. In each investment it makes, RDIF is required to secure co-investment that at minimum matches its commitment, thus acting as a catalyst for direct investment into the Russian economy. In September 2011 the International Advisory Board of RDIF was appointed, including the heads of the Chinese, Kuwaiti and Korean sovereign wealth funds as well as founders and CEOs of leading private equity firms Apollo, Blackstone, TPG, Apax, Warburg Pincus and Permira. Additional information is available at http://www.rdif.ru.
SOURCE Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF)