BOFIT Viikkokatsaus / BOFIT Weekly 2019/19

The Central Bank of Russia reports that services exports last year rose by 12 % and service imports by 7 %. Thanks to some extent to the FIFA World Cup, travel service exports were up by 28 %.

In 2018, foreigners purchased Russian services worth a total of 65 billion dollars. Of that, 18 % consisted of tourism services, while 34 % was transport services. Air transport accounted for the bulk of spending on transport services. Of service exports, 11 % went to countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), 45 % to Europe and 5 % to China.

Russians last year purchased services from abroad worth a total of 94 billion dollars. Of that, 36 % is due to tourism services and 16 % to transport services. Of service imports, 6 % came from CIS countries, 51 % from Europe and 3 % from China. Turkey, a favourite holiday destination for Russians, accounted for 7 % of service imports. Egypt, once a popular vacation destination, lost its position after a terrorist attack on a Russian charter plane in 2015 and Russia’s ban on package tours to Egypt. Although the ban was lifted last year, charter flights to Egypt have yet to resume.

Russian services trade, 2004–2018

Source: Central Bank of Russia.