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In all, 12 McDonald's restaurants have been closed in Russia so far. Six of them are in Krasnodar and three in Moscow.
Russian consumer watchdog Rospotrebnadzor is currently checking 100 restaurants of the fast-food giant across Russia, the press service told ITAR-TASS.
Six outlets have closed throughout the entire Krasnodar region. Three have closed in Moscow, one at Serpukhov in the wider Moscow region, one in the southern Stavropol region and one in Yekaterinburg, Russia’s fourth-largest city, in the Urals.
Moscow courts on Wednesday ordered a 90-day closure of three McDonald's restaurants in the city centre over breaches of sanitary rules. These included the famous location on Pushkin Square that brought McDonald's to Russia just before the fall of the Soviet Union, a branch on Manezh Square under the Kremlin walls, and on the thoroughfare Prospect Mira.
A regional court in Yekaterinburg on Wednesday ordered the outlet's branch there to close for 85 days.
Russia's food safety agency Rospotrebnadzor is currently checking 100 restaurants of the fast-food giant nationwide, the company press service told ITAR-TASS.
Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets said there was no “total plan” to inspect all the chain's outlets in Russia. She claimed activities were being carried out “in accordance with the general plan, and based on some cases of violations of sanitary-epidemiological legislation”.
Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said Russian authorities were not planning to close down McDonald's chain nationwide.
“No-one is talking about it at all [a ban on McDonald's in Russia],” Dvorkovich said after inspectors took to the road. But some businessmen in Russia said checks had been driven by souring relations between Russia and the West over events in Ukraine.
“Obviously it's driven by political issues surrounding Ukraine,” said Alexis Rodzianko, president and CEO of the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia.
Outlets closed as Russia introduced a year-long embargo on meat, fish, dairy, fruit and vegetables from the United States, the European Union, Canada, Australia and Norway in retaliation for economic sanctions imposed by those nations on Russia.
McDonald's operates 435 restaurants in 85 Russian cities and rates the country one of its top seven markets outside the United States and Canada, according to its 2013 annual report. The company employs nearly 37,000 people in Russia, serving more than one million customers a day.