5 charts show Russia’s economic highs and lows under Putin

Russia’s economy seeking to attract foreign direct investment, boost a variety of industries and to exploit Russia’s natural resources, particularly the country’s abundance of oil and gas.

Of course it’s not all been plain sailing. Russia has been hit by economic misfortunes both of its own making —such as international sanctions placed on key sectors after its 2014 annexation of Crimea from Ukraine and its meddling in the 2016 U.S. election — and some it had no control over, such as the 2008 financial crash, 2014 oil price crash and most recently, the Covid-19 pandemic.

More than 20 years after Putin came to prominence, Russia — a country which spans Europe to Asia and has around 144 million inhabitants — is facing challenges that the Kremlin will have to tackle soon enough.

These range from the more pressing matter of living standards and the specter of inflation that could hit Russian consumers at a time of vulnerability, to longer-term issues such as Russia’s transition away from its energy-dependent, export-oriented economy.

Has taken a look at economic data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development that spans the two decades that Putin has been in power, looking at the country’s growth rate, GDP per capita, employment picture and inflation story as well as household disposable income compared to its neighbors in the EU, the wider OECD (which includes 38 countries from around the world) and the U.S.

Russia’s economic growth
Russia’s economy has undoubtedly grown under Putin, although it took a deeper dive than others after the financial crisis of 2008, as this graph shows.

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