The Risks and Rewards of Investing in Russia
Tuesday, May 3, 2011 / 11:00 am - 12:15 pm
Robert von Rekowsky, Portfolio Manager, Emerging Markets, Fidelity Investments
Mikhail Abyzov, Chairman, RU-COM
Dmitry Akhanov, President, Rusnano USA
Alexander Kovaler, Chairman and CEO, Wendy's/Arby's Russia
Ruben Vardanian, Chairman and CEO, Troika Dialog
Russia has always been an oddity among the BRICs, with superior social indicators and a recent history as a modern superpower. Despite these advantages, it lagged far behind other emerging markets during the recession and recovery. But the first quarter of 2011 brought a reversal of fortunes. While money has been shifting out of markets like Brazil, ETF flows have been pouring into Russia - and investors were rewarded handsomely as turmoil in the Middle East boosted Russian energy stocks. How sustainable are these gains? President Medvedev has outlined plans to improve the investment climate and end conflicts of interest. Will a true reform agenda take hold, easing investors' fears about corruption? With Russia on the brink of gaining its long-sought admission to the WTO, can the economy diversify beyond its traditional dependence on natural resources? Is the government ramping up for heavy stimulus spending on infrastructure? This panel will offer an insider's view of Russia's prospects for sustainable growth and reform.