Russia is attracting the least foreign direct investment (FDI) of all the BRIC countries and that share has fallen over the last five years.
The latest report from the UN agency UNCTAD found that the flow of FDI into Russia last year slowed substantially to just $10bn, about a third of the levels in recent years, reports Bank of Finland Institute for Economies in Transition (BOFIT).
And as most of last year’s inflows consisted of re-invested earnings, which most other countries don't count as FDI in their national accounts, the level of directly comparable FDI into Russia is even lower than the figures suggest.
“Falling oil prices and geopolitical tensions, as well as additional restrictions on foreign media ownership, have dampened interest in new investment in Russia and caused some firms to pull back on investment (e.g. General Motors and Raiffeisen Bank) or pull out from the Russian market altogether (e.g. ConocoPhillips and Axel Springer),” BOFIT said in a report.
The global flow of direct investment rose nearly 40% last year. Only 0.6% of global direct investment went to Russia, UNCTAD reports. Russia’s share in earlier years was about 2%. The outflow of FDI from Russia to other countries was $27bn last year, less than half the outbound FDI of 2014. Russia has always been a net exporter of capital with most of that money going into its “near abroad” of Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) countries.
FDI flows to Kazakhstan fell last year by nearly half of the 2014 level. FDI flows to Ukraine, however, increased substantially from the previous year, when they hit a record low, BOFIT says.