The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum was attended by more than 5,000 participants, including high-ranking officials, leading businessmen, companies’ chief executives and economic pundits world over who were involved in a three day lively and sometimes heated debate on how to handle global economy and, specifically, on how to business with Russia.
The annual St. Petersburg Economic Forum, labeled by some as “Russian Davos” — already 19th gathering in its history, for the first time was held in an international environment which by no means can be described as business-friendly. The US and EU sanctions, imposed on Russia in the midst of the crisis in Ukraine severely handicapped business and trade ties and made some of Russia’s traditional partners in the West to face sanction war with growing uneasiness, frustration and even despair. However, warning signals from the White House which called on political leaders and captains of global business to think twice before choosing to go to St. Petersburg simply didn’t work.
Paradoxically enough, the overall representation of global business even exceeded the last year records when the forum was attended by 4,700 participants from 73 countries.
Andrei Fyodorov, former deputy Foreign Minister of Russia, director of the Center for Political Research and Consulting Foundation (studio guest), Dmitry Babich, political analalyst (studio guest), Anastasia Nesvetailova, Professor at the City University London and Director of City Political Economy Research Centre (CITYPERC) and Pekka Viljakainnen, Finnish businessman and senior advisor to President of the Skolkovo Foundation commented on the issue.