Foreign Investment Slumps in Q1

Foreign direct investment into the country fell 42.8 percent in the first quarter as investors avoided emerging markets in the global credit crunch.

Direct investment totaled $5.59 billion, while total foreign investment, including credits and flows into the securities markets, was $17.3 billion, or 30 percent less than in the first quarter last year, the State Statistics Service said in a statement Wednesday. Foreign investment in stocks and bonds fell 44 percent to $107 million, it said.

Foreign direct investment doubled last year to $27.8 billion as economic growth fueled a boom in consumption and attracted investors.GDP rose 8.1 percent last year, the highest since 2000.

The retail industry, including automotive and household good repairs, received the largest amount of investment, according to the Statistics Service. Foreign investors brought $5.47 billion into the industry, including stock and bond purchases, the service said.

Cyprus is the largest foreign investor in Russia followed by the Netherlands, Luxemburg and Britain, the service said.