The head of a state investment fund in Russia on Friday hailed the country’s leap to third place in foreign direct investment rankings in 2013, up from ninth position the previous year.
Russia’s performance reflects a broader surge in investment into transition economies, where direct investment inflows in 2013 rose by 45 percent, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development.
Foreign direct investment into Russia increased by 83 percent last year, to $94 billion, a rise largely accounted for by British energy major BP’s purchase of an 18.5 percent stake in Russian oil giant Rosneft.
Russian Direct Investment Fund chief executive Kirill Dmitriev attributed this improved performance in part to efforts to make it easier for foreign business to operate in the country’s regions.
“Russia has this year risen to the third for received foreign investment, although earlier it occupied the ninth place. We have managed to make a qualitative breakthrough in the improvement of the investment climate in the regions,” he told the Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum.
Experts of the Valdai Club of foreign and Russian political scientists presented a report at the forum Thursday calling for further opening of the regions to international investors.
One author of the report, Oleg Barabanov of the Moscow State Institute of Foreign Relations, said efforts should be undertaken to forge strategies to make Siberia competitive in the large economy of the Asia-Pacific region.
Dmitriev said his fund had over two years attracted $3.8 billion of foreign capital into domestic companies. The fund contributed $900 million over that period, he said.
Dmitriev told the Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum that he expected investment into the country’s agrarian sector in the near future.
Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum, which is devoted to seeking out new drivers for the Russian economy is taking place over three days in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk running up until March 1.