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VLADIVOSTOK, September 3. /TASS/. European businesses are demonstrating increased interest to new investment projects in Russia as its economy is reviving after the crisis, Russian Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin said on Sunday.
"I can say that we did it," he said in an interview with the NTV television channel when asked whether Russia is through with the crisis. "The latest statistics - for the second quarter - demonstrate a 2.5% growth. We haven’t seen such growth since, I think, 2012. We see that investment activities, a major factor of future growth, are reviving."
"We did have economic difficulties as some companies were not that active over that period but as long as the economy is reviving, European businesses are looking at new investment plans, making new investments," he said, adding that, for instance, France’s cumulative investment in Russia has reached €18 billion.
The minister admitted however that the United States’ new anti-Russian sanctions are threatening joint projects of Russia and Europe. "Tension is felt. Not between us and Europe but between Europe and the United States," Oreshkin noted. "The Americans are not that active on the Russian market and everything they are doing is a threat to the projects the Europeans are implementing jointly with Russian companies on the global arena or on the Russian market."
In late July, the US Congress passed a bill tightening unilateral sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea. The document, dubbed Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, enshrines restrictions introduced by the previous US administration and deprives the US president of the right to ease the restrictions without congressional approval. US President Donald Trump signed this bill into law in early August but said that a number of its provisions violated the country’s constitution and accused US lawmakers of doing harm to the US-Russian relations.