Russia – great potential in an eventful environment
With some 146 million consumers, Russia is Europe's most populous country. A well-trained workforce, high income and demanding consumers make it an extremely attractive market. The Russian government is countering current EU sanctions with a policy of import substitution, which means that the economy is now slowly growing again.
One of the largest and most dynamic packaging markets in the world
Increasing production in the country will allow the Russian packaging industry to grow in the next few years - by 8.5% between 2015 and 2020. This makes Russia one of the five most rapidly growing markets and, based on sales, in 2015 it had the eighth largest packaging industry in the world. Furthermore, in various sectors the country is the market leader in Europe – for example, in flexible packaging, paper and cardboard and hard plastic. In order to modernise, high quality machinery and know-how from the West is much in demand.
Soon to be Europe's largest food market
According to forecasts, by 2020 Russia will overtake Germany to become the largest food market in Europe – and this in turn accounts for 70% of all packaging in Russia. Local production, for example of milk, meat and fish has risen dramatically since 2015 which in turn meant an increase in the demand for packaging. Apart from Russian retail companies, foreign companies are also surging onto the market. In addition, e-commerce in the food sector is likely to increase by 11% per annum by 2018.
Drinks market defies difficult conditions
Russia also has one of the largest drinks markets in Europe – in 2014 alone 26 billion litres of packaged drinks were sold. The sector has, however, also had to face cuts in the last three years: for various reasons there has been a decline overall in the consumption of alcoholic drinks in the home of vodka. However, experts predict that the potential growth particularly for wine will increase again after 2017. There are also mixed indicators concerning the production of non-alcoholic drinks – it’s a matter of wait and see and keep on battling the crisis.
Innovative technology needed for the packaging of medicines
The Russian market for the packaging of medicines is booming as a result of an ageing society and increased awareness of health. By 2018 the Russian government wants to produce 90% of medical products in their own country. This won't happen without western technology – a great opportunity, for example, for international manufacturers of packaging machinery.