Russia, a nation that spans both Europe and Asia, is home to over 143 million people.
The official language is Russian, and because of compulsory free education, literacy rates are at 100%. English is not very widely spoken.
Russia is now a federal semi-presidential constitutional republic, after almost 75 years as an authoritarian one-party Communist state. The government is led by a president and prime minister, who is appointed by the president and approved by parliament.
Under the rule of the U.S.S.R. (through 1991), religion was suppressed and the nation was official atheist. Religious worship is now permitted and many different religions are represented, including Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Buddhism.
The currency is the Russian ruble.
Russia: Business Negotiation Etiquette
Russian negotiations may include temper tantrums, threats, and/or walkouts. To best prepare for this type of situation, make sure your team is in full agreement and understanding of what you want out of the deal. Present a factual and detailed argument and do not show anything but unity amongst your team members. Be prepared to play hardball. It’s said that if parties don’t storm out of negotiations at least twice, they didn’t try hard enough.
Perseverance and patience is highly prized in Russia. They are well know for their ability to outsit their fellow negotiators, as they see compromise as a sign of weakness.
At the end of each meeting, you may be asked to review and sign a Protokol, which is essentially official meeting minutes. It is not a formal agreement. Until a signed formal contract is in place, do not be overconfident. Also, once a contract is in place, do not expect the opportunity to renegotiate.