The survey was conducted in November 2017. It covered about 1,300 companies from 50 regions of Russia, representing three groups of exporters: producers who export their own products; trade companies who export goods produced by other companies; consulting and transportation companies.
According to the results of the survey, 22% of respondents believe that the conditions for exports in Russia improved in 2017; the most significant improvements are seen in implementing electronic document flow. The factors that affect the assessments the most strongly are: procedures for placing goods under customs treatment, foreign exchange control procedures, and the level of Russian infrastructure used for exports. Negative assessments are mostly linked to e-document flow issues and to railway and road transportation tariffs (40% and 37% of respondents, respectively, stated that these conditions had deteriorated).
Producing companies generally give better assessments of the overall changes in the export environment in Russia: 24% give positive answers against 16% for trading companies. The differences are mainly related to foreign exchange controls and the transportation infrastructure. Companies in the food industry and in the FMCG give the most optimistic answers about the overall changes in the conditions for exports. Negative assessments are mainly found in the metallurgical industry.
The most common problems mentioned by the exporters are lengthy customs procedures, shortage of freight cars, low awareness about the available mechanisms of state support for exporters, and the complicated procedure of confirming zero VAT rate for exports.
As for the structure of expenditure in Russian exporting companies in 2017, the greatest amount of resources, expressed in both time and money, was spent on customs clearance formalities. Certificates for country of origin require considerable expense too, but they usually take less time.