The International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates that Russia’s economy has already entered recession as fears of broad economic sanctions weigh on the economy.
Russia’s economy shrank 0.5 percent in the first quarter of the year compared with the previous three-month period, and is expected to continue struggling, said the head of the IMF mission in Russia, Antonio Spilimbergo.
“If you understand by recession two quarters of negative economic growth then Russia is experiencing recession now,” Spilimbergo told reporters. Investors are worried that the U.S. and Europe will step up sanctions against Russia because of its policies in Ukraine. Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula became a part of Russia last month, and Russia has been blamed for fomenting unrest in eastern Ukraine. As a result, investors pulled about $60 billion from Russia in the first quarter of the year: more than in all of 2013.
The IMF expects the capital outflows at around $100 billion this year, Spilimbergo said. But in Russia, not everyone is as concerned about the potential fallout. CCTV’s Rachelle Akuffo reports.