Russia listens to rating agencies’ assessments, but some of its criteria, like the impact of malaria on local business seems weird, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin told reporters on Friday.
“Of course, we must admit that risks and uncertainties of our business climate are still very high, unfortunately. You can treat international ratings differently, they make many mistakes themselves, but it is good that they point to our problems, we are grateful,” he said.
Putin added that he would like to see more balanced ratings.
“According to the assessments, Russia is almost a world leader in such a negative criterion that affects the investment climate as the effect of malaria for business. Where is Russia and where is the malaria? Strange assessment and strange criteria,” he said.
“But if we abstract from the costs and the obvious absurdity, we take our colleagues who rate us with such unfavorable valuation seriously. In part, we really agree with that and we understand that we have a lot to change.”
Russia attracts much less foreign investment than peers such as China, which attracted a record $105.7 billion in foreign direct investment last year. Russia, with its corruption and red tape, brought in just $13.8 billion and expects a net capital outflow of $30-40 billion this year.