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Get to Know Russia

International trade success is not only about you and your customers. Learn business facts about the countries that you trade with and familiarize yourself with the different business practices, cultures, customs and economics.

At a Glance

Russia spans 6.5 million square miles (17 million square kilometers) that are home to 139.4 million people (2010 estimate), including a workforce of 75.55 million. However, the country is experiencing a population decline that is expected to reduce the population by 30% during the next half-century. Services employ 58.1% of the workforce, followed by industry (31.9%) and agriculture (10%).

The main private sector services—wholesale and retail trade, banking and insurance, and transportation and communications—showed strong growth of about 10%. In contrast, public sector services lagged behind in 2007 with only 1.6%-2.4% growth in education and health care, although public administration increased to 7.5%. Recent productivity growth has still been strong in some parts of domestic manufacturing. Real disposable incomes grew by 10.4% in 2007 spurring considerable growth in private consumption.

Financial Facts
  • Estimated GDP (2010) of US$2.223 trillion or US$15,900 per capita
  • GDP grew 4% from 2009-2010
  • Services account for 62% of GDP
  • Industry generates 33.8% of GDP. The country manufactures automobiles, trucks, trains, agricultural equipment, advanced aircraft, aerospace, machine and equipment products; mining and extractive industry; medical and scientific instruments; construction equipment. It is the world's third-largest exporter of steel and primary aluminum.
  • Agriculture generates 4.2% of GDP

The Federation of International Trade Associations (FITA) notes, “The country is open to foreign trade in spite of the nationalistic attitude of its leaders and strict legislation and tariff policies. Russia is among the 10 largest exporters and the 20 largest importers in the world. Russia shows a trade surplus, and it will increase again in spite of the fall of raw materials price and the deterioration of the economic situation worldwide.”

Perhaps you’re interested in establishing a partnership with one of the country’s exporters. You may be considering joint ventures with Russian companies, franchise or licensing opportunities or sales of your products and services in Russia. Whatever your interests and needs, the resources provided here will lead you to information that can support your entry into this market.