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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russians Guard Strategic Sectors

Most Russians believe the government should restrict foreigners' access to such strategic assets as natural resources and the defense industry, according to a poll released this week.

Eighty percent of respondents said that foreign investors should under no circumstances be allowed to invest in the military-industrial complex, VTsIOM polling agency found.

Similarly, about two-thirds of Russians said money from abroad should be shut out of the oil and gas, electricity, mining and forestry sectors. Half were against foreigners participating in aircraft construction.

Although foreign companies invest in all these sectors, the government is strengthening its control over the strategic sectors.

If foreign companies are to build partnerships with Russian firms, they must "align their business objectives with the strategic national objectives" of Russia, said Peter Necarsulmer, founder and CEO of PBN public relations agency.

"You may be the largest company in the world, but you are going to be a junior partner" in Russia, he said.

On the other hand, Russians are relaxed about other sectors of the economy. About 60 percent of poll respondents said that some or all barriers to foreigners should be removed in the auto industry, advertising and construction.

The poll, which questioned 1,600 people in 153 cities in 46 regions, was conducted during the summer and had a margin of error of 3.4 percentage points.