Russia to open trading mission in Abkhazia.

SOCHI (Itar-Tass) -- The Russian Ministry of Economic Development and Trade plans to open a trade mission in Abkhazia, the Russian ambassador to Abkhazia, Semyon Grigoriev, said on Tuesday.

The opening of the trading mission will ease access to the local economy for Russian businesses. So far unsettled legal issues have hindered the access of foreign investments.

“Before last August there existed no legal basis. Abkhazia was a ‘grey zone’ a self-proclaimed republic.

Making investments in it was fraught with both political and economic risks, Grigoriev said. The agreement on the mutual protection and promotion of investments is expected to change the situation for the better.

Abkhazia has a large potential in terms of the production of building materials, which would be of great help in the course of preparations for the Sochi Winter Olympics, the ambassador said.

“There will be other opportunities for using the natural and technical potential of the republic. That will be governed by separate agreements between commercial structures,” Grigoriev said.

According to a foreign ministry official, companies in many constituent territories of Russia took interest in doing business in Abkhazia. A dozen memorandums of economic cooperation have been signed between Russian regions and Abkhazia so far. In the near future Sukhum is expecting a governor-led delegation of businessmen from Russia’s Kursk Region.

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