Tugging at Russia’s Purse Strings

Here’s an interesting one from TOL, which argues that Russia is still not content with its economic expansion: Questions remain, however, whether Russian companies are content with their current success. Even with Vladimir Putin lashing out at the West at every turn, Russia still took in a record $28 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2007, and Russian companies invested almost three times that amount abroad. But Wilson says such figures are deceptive and mask a hunger for overseas expansion. “Russia wants all sorts of downstream investment in the EU. Currently Russia has the best of both worlds. We don’t insist on open markets and a rule of law on their part, but offer it to them. Russia has no need of aid, but Russian companies like IPOs and international loans. FDI is OK, but nowhere near as high as it could be.”