April 23, 2023

Low Batteries, High Hidden Imports


Low Batteries, High Hidden Imports
Duracell batteries. Duracell, Instagram.

Duracell, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of batteries, announced it is pulling out of the Russian market. The American company is the latest to take this measure after a wave of firms declared their exit from Russia when it invaded Ukraine.

Duracell Russia said in a letter: "Our shareholders decided to leave the Russian market and terminate Duracell's business in Russia following Russian laws and regulations. After liquidation, Duracell's shareholders do not intend to distribute or otherwise make our products available on the Russian market." Duracell is not alone. The Dutch beer company Heineken recently revealed it sold its Russian assets.

But will these products really leave? Russia has found multiple ways of getting around boycotts and sanctions, whether through creating its own alternative versions of Western companies such as Stars Coffee, a copy of Starbucks, or through parallel importing, which consists of foreign products being imported without the consent of the original company and being introduced to the market through a third party or country. Parallel importing has become a running currency in Russia, with big-name realtors such as Wildberries and Ozon actively resorting to it.

Duracell may not be able to disappear from the Russian market, as the Ministry of Trade is considering putting the battery company on its list for parallel imports.

 

 

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