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Russia hopes Western opponents of sanctions will be heard at Davos Forum — Russian expert

January 21, 2015, 5:02 UTC+3 DAVOS

The 2015 forum, to be held in Davos on January 21-24, will be attended by more than 2,500 delegates

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DAVOS, January 21. /TASS/. Russia hopes Western opponents of anti-Russian sanctions will be heard at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Kirill Dmitriyev, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, told TASS on Wednesday.

The 2015 forum, to be held in Davos on January 21-24, will be attended by more than 2,500 delegates, including more than 200 state officials from various countries. Taking part in the forum will be US Secretary of State John Kerry, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande. The Russian delegation will be led by First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, who will arrive in Davos on January 23.

One of the subjects for discussion at the forum will be the United States and the European Union’s sanctions imposed on Russia over the Ukrainian developments.

“We have been repeatedly told that Western, primarily European, businessmen speak up against these sanctions. We hope their voice will grow stronger and will ultimately be heard,” Dmitriyev said. His fund has managed to attract 15 billion U.S. dollars of foreign capital to the Russian economy since its establishment in 2011.

Dmitryev said that along with existing partners, representatives of the fund would meet with potential partners from such funds in Asia, the Middle East and Latin America. He stressed that his fund had never been guided by political considerations in its relations with foreign partners.

“In investing activities, sovereign funds are guided by economic expediency rather than political considerations. It doesn’t exclude open discussion of problems and risks but it ensures progress in relations that is crowned by the implementation of concrete projects,” he said.

He said that the depreciation of a number of Russian assets stemming from the rouble devaluation and the fall in market quotations created new possibilities for investments. “We also plan to discuss new investment possibilities stemming from the depreciation of a range of assets that might be of interest from the point of view of growth for long-term investors,” he added.

Russian officials and businessmen have been taking part in the Davos World Economic Forum since 1987. Vladimir Putin visited Davos in 2009, when he was Russia’s Prime Minister. In 2014, the Russian delegation to the forum was led by Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich.

Founded in 1971, the World Economic Forum is annually held in Switzerland’s Davos. Heads of state and top executives of the world’s leading corporations meet here to discuss topical political and economic problems. On the backdrop of geopolitical conflict and the economic crisis, this year’s forum will be dedicated to measures of rebuilding trust.

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