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Putin: Foreign companies leaving Russia blessing for home-grown businesses

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting of the State Council Presidium at the Kremlin in Moscow on May 25, 2022. (Photo by AFP)

Russian President Vladimir Putin has depicted foreign companies’ withdrawal from the country as a blessing and an opportunity for home-grown businesses.

“Sometimes when you look at those who leave - thank God, perhaps? We will occupy their niches: our business, our production – it has already grown, and it will safely sit on the ground prepared by our partners,” Putin said, speaking by video link to leaders of ex-Soviet states on Thursday. 

Putin's military operation in Ukraine, which he casts as a turning point in his country's history and a revolt against the US, has caused many foreign corporations to leave Russia.

The Russian president also warned the West that Moscow would still find ways to acquire advanced technology and luxury goods, such as Mercedes favored by bandits. However, he admitted they might be a little more expensive.

“It will be a little more expensive for them but these are people who already drove Mercedes 600s and they will still do so. I can assure you they will bring them in from wherever, from whichever country,” President Putin emphasized.

“We are not going to cut ourselves off from this,” he said, referring to the advanced technologies of developed economies.

He further said that squeezing Russia from modern technology is “unrealistic and impossible,” stressing that Western attempts to isolate Russia would fail, as developed economies in the Europe are struggling with soaring inflation, broken supply chains and a food crisis.

According to the Russian president, Moscow is turning away from the West in favor of China, India and other powers, in the face of US and European sanctions.

“In any case, we are definitely acquiring new competencies, we are starting to concentrate our economic, financial and administrative resources on breakthrough areas,” Putin said referring to his country’s practice of coping with sanctions.

The US and its Western allies have imposed a raft of sanctions against Russia over its offensive in Ukraine, in a bid to isolate Russia and bring its economy to its knees.

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