Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said Friday at the World Economic Forum in Davos that Western companies have been contacting the Kremlin in order to prepare for the possible lifting of sanctions. Shuvalov also claimed that there was “enormous interest” in the Russian economy, and a closed meeting would be taking place for investors, reports The Moscow Times.
“The mood is different [at the Davos forum],” Shuvalov said. “Everyone is concerned about how Russia and the United States will be getting along, about what will happen with the sanctions agenda, and generally about what will be a new world order.”
The Russian government, as well as the population, is hopeful that relations will improve between the two countries and that sanctions, applied by the EU and the Obama administration in the wake of Russia’s actions in Ukraine, will be removed.
The sanctions, along with a massive decrease in the price of crude oil on international markets, has seriously wounded the Russian economy, sending it into a recession. Although the Russian Central Bank suggests 2% growth in 2017, that depends on the continued rise in the price of oil. As American shale oil wells come back on line, the oil market could be pressured once again. This gives the removal of sanctions added importance to Moscow.