Country Partner of the Year

Winner
Switzerland

Switzerland was the only European country not to join the Western sectoral sanctions against Russia and continued to supply Russia cheese, dairy and meat products. In February 2015, Rosselkhoznadzor officially allowed eight Swiss companies to export cheeses and sausages to Russia. There are plans to issue permits to another five exporters of cheese and ready meat products in November.

In addition, Switzerland has continued the large-scale cultural project "Made in Switzerland," which was launched in Russia in 2013. Leading musicians, artists, film directors and writers who represent modern Switzerland on the world stage visited Russia for tours and master classes as part of this project.

France

Business France, the French state agency for trade and investment, launched French Tech, a joint project with the Skolkovo fund, in June. As part of this project, Business France hosted a large-scale Day of Innovation in the Skolkovo Hypercube in late September. On this occasion, the largest French companies operating in Russia – Alstom, EDF, Airbus, Dassault Systems and Saint Gobain – joined together in an innovative R&D Club, and French startups and individual entrepreneurs took part in the creation of a French Tech Hub in Moscow. Moscow is the third world capital to establish a French Tech Hub, after New York and Tokyo. The intention of the initiative is for Russian companies and entrepreneurs to get to know France as a leading technological power that supports the development of high technology.

Business France also organized study tours of the Russian regions for French farmers this year (for example, producers of foie gras visited Bashkiria), and for Russian farmers in France (for example, representatives of UGMK Agro and Lukoz Saba, large producers of cow and goat milk, visited the Poitou-Charentes region). In addition, Business France brought of French specialists in ornamental horticulture and landscape design, as well as winemakers, to the Krasnodar region.

India

For India, the expansion of trade and economic cooperation with Russia is a strategic priority. The goal of the current government is to bring the level of bilateral trade from the present $9.5 billion a year to $30 billion by 2025. India exports pharmaceutical products, hardware, clothing, tea, coffee and tobacco to Russia, and purchases military hardware, nuclear power equipment, fertilizers, power engineering products, steel and diamonds.

Indian investments in Russia, estimated at about $7 billion, include Imperial Energy in Tomsk, ONGC oil and gas corporation investments in Sakhalin and the Volzhsky Abrasive Works in Volgograd. Russian investments in India total about $3 billion, the main projects being Kamaz Vectra in Hosur, Shyam Sistema Telecom Ltd., Sberbank subsidiaries and VTB bank.

Argentina

Argentina was one of the first food exporter countries to fill the Russian market with its products after the imposition of the trade embargo. In 2014 alone, Argentina increased its supply of beef to Russia by 50 percent in annual terms, tripled cheeses, increased shellfish by 2.5 times, and frozen fish by 50 percent. The year’s shipment of agricultural products from Argentina to Russia exceeded $1 billion. In the first half of 2015, that growth continued, and the import of Argentine beef rose to 2,500 tonnes.

In the spring of 2015, during the visit of Argentine President Cristina Kirchner to Russia, the countries signed contracts on the participation of Russian companies in major investment projects in Argentina. In particular, Vnesheconombank is providing a credit of $1.2 billion for delivery of Russian equipment and payment on the contract to construct the Chihuido 1 hydroelectric power station in Argentina with the participation of Inter RAO Export (total project cost: $2 billion). Rosatom is involved in the construction of the sixth unit of the Argentine Atucha nuclear power plant, with a 1,200 MW light-water reactor. Gazprom and the Argentine state company YPF signed a memorandum of cooperation to jointly develop gas fields in Argentina.

Singapore

The city-state celebrated the 50th anniversary of its independence in 2015. As part of the anniversary celebrations, the Embassy of Singapore in Russia publicized Singapore's tourism and business opportunities. The city-state is also supporting the Changi group project to modernize the airports in the Krasnodar territory.