RUSSIA (Russia is forecast to see negative GDP growth in the 2nd half of 2020):
Russia is starting to see larger numbers of COVID-19 cases. Russia has closed its borders to foreigners in recent weeks.
The COVID-19 virus has been responsible for up to 50% of ongoing construction projects to be shut down and the ones that have continued to work have imposed safety and travel restrictions.
Russia also continues to be vulnerable to US and Western European economic sanctions that will continue to suppress construction activity. The COVID-19 virus will influence future CAPEX projects and some projects will be cancelled.
Oil prices have plummeted by more than 30% in the last two months. An agreement between Saudi Arabia and Russia — two of the world’s largest oil-producing countries has been reached, however oil prices continue to be very low which will stymie the Russian economy.
A severe fall in the Russian Ruble after the dramatic oil price drop has given Russia a strategic advantage. Russia can now pump & produce oil at lower price or similar price than Saudi Arabia. This situation has sent shock waves around the world & could see the demise of OPEC. If this situation continues, look for decreased investment & activity in the US & International oil patch.
The reality is that many Russian related construction projects will be delayed, deferred or worst case situation abandoned due to the (COVID-19) virus, this could raise construction unemployment rates.