Large number of Western companies ready to return to Russia at first opportunity - Peskov
MOSCOW. June 14 (Interfax) - A large number of Western companies have said that they are ready to resume their businesses in Russia at the first opportunity, Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov said.
"A large number of companies from Western countries - from EU countries, the U.S. and Canada - remain interested in the Russian market. A large number of companies say that they now have to wind down their operations due to unprecedented pressure. But, at the same time, they say that they would like to return at the first opportunity," Peskov told reporters.
The Kremlin realizes that foreign businesses which have announced their intention to take part in the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) are subject to unprecedented pressure from the West, he said.
"Interested investors and entrepreneurs will participate in the forum. Of course, we understand that all of them are in the cross-hairs of ill-wishers from the collective West who are wringing their hands, threatening them, blackmailing them, etc.," Peskov said when asked whether foreign entrepreneurs' refusal to take part in the SPIEF could mean their refusal to cooperate with Russia in the future.
Apart from investors from the U.S. and European Union countries, there are far larger investors from countries in the Middle East, China, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and other countries.
"These investors are interested, and their entrepreneurs will actively participate in the forum," he said.
"All this blackmail is unable to reduce the aforementioned investors' interest in the Russian market to zero," Peskov said.
"Whenever required", Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold meetings with Russian and foreign investors on the sidelines of the SPIEF, he said.