A research by CBRE indicated that international brands have partly lost interest in the Russian market due to the Covid-19 pandemic. In the first quarter of 2021, only three fashion brands entered the country: Ecco Kids, Shikkosa and Accessorize.

This is estimated to be the lowest number since the 2014 crisis when a sharp decline in the Russian ruble’s exchange rate prompted brands to revise their plans of entering the Russian market.

CBRE forecast that between nine and 12 foreign brands could enter the Russian market in 2021, and 10 to 11 could leave the country. For example,  it expects H&M’s store chain Arket to begin operating in Russia this year.

International retailers’ interest in the Russian market may recover to pre-pandemic levels in 2023, CBRE said. Currently, plans to invest in the country are affected by travel restrictions and a drop in footfall despite Russia has softer anti-Covid measures than many other countries.