Russia will introduce duty-free retailers promoting western imports to diplomats for overseas foreign money in a follow that can remind many Russians of the notorious beryozka shops that epitomised official privilege in the course of the Soviet period.

The retailers, which might open as quickly because the autumn, will promote imported items that will develop into onerous to search out in atypical Russian retailers as overseas manufacturers flee the nation over the conflict in Ukraine.

However so as to make a purchase order, guests must present an official doc to show they’re a overseas diplomat, worker of a global organisation or a member of the family. And the retailers may even settle for fee in {dollars} and euro, mimicking the beryozka shops’ perform as a magnet for overseas foreign money.

“It’s a complete USSR!” wrote Sergei Smirnov, the editor-in-chief of the Russian outlet Mediazona, which wrote in regards to the laws after its announcement in Russia’s official parliamentary newspaper.

Western model names have already develop into tougher to search out in lots of retailers in Russia. Consumers have flocked to shops owned by main manufacturers like H&M because the Swedish clothes retailer reopened its doorways this week in a ultimate sell-off of its stock earlier than leaving the nation for good.

The duty-free shops will probably be owned by an organization created by the Russian overseas ministry and one other entity chosen in a contest. The retailers’ items will embrace alcohol, tobacco merchandise, jewelry, cosmetics, perfumes and sweets, in addition to smartphones and watches, Mediazona reported.

It’s not but clear whether or not the digital items will embrace merchandise comparable to iPhones, that are now not being straight imported to Russia.

The overseas ministry has thought of opening a duty-free retailer for overseas diplomats since at the very least 2015, after Russia banned many European meals imports as a part of its counter-sanctions bundle after the annexation of Crimea, based on Russian information shops.

In a 2014 letter obtained by the Russian information web site, Russia’s overseas minister, Sergei Lavrov, stated the retailers would assist curtail “monetary losses and delays” related to delivering items to overseas diplomatic missions in Russia, Radio Free Europe reported.

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