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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Foreign Firms Profiteering, Group Says

Foreign companies are taking advantage of Russia's economic situation to "suck bigger profits" from consumers, the president of a major international consumer advocacy group said Wednesday.

Erna Witoelar, president of the International Organization of Consumers' Unions, told a news conference Wednesday that the companies profiteer at Russians' expense by selling second-rate goods, dumping products rejected by other countries and failing to service warranties.

"There are many cases of products and services offered by foreign companies in Russia that are even harmful to the consumer," she said.

Witoelar cited the pharmaceutical industry as an area of concern, saying prescription drugs are often sold after their expiry date in Russia. Once outdated, under international law the producing country is not responsible, she said.