Russia's Putin Says NYET to Foreign Imports

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Is great to be leader of glorious Russian Federation. Of course, we can always be more glorious. And glory be to the Russian car industry. Make world's greatest automobiles for world's greatest people. Is natural we want to build cars inside Russian Federation, to help our economy grow and prosper, like garden. So we are placing new tariffs on used cars more than five years old. Is simple economics. Russian-made cars are only 40 percent of the market, including foreign brands. This is all because the Russian car industry has receded from its position quite seriously. I am thinking about 80 percent of cars sold in Russia should be made in our country. New import tariffs rates will increase demand for clean new cars. Pravda, which means truth, says "Russian car manufacturers may not derive profit from it at all." But who knows what they mean and that is before I make phone call. Until then, I remind Russia's foreign partners in auto industry of old proverb: "What's mine is mine and what's yours is mine." Dasvidanya.

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

More by Robert Farago

Join the conversation
4 of 14 comments
  • Slow_Joe_Crow Slow_Joe_Crow on May 28, 2008

    @cjdumm "Duroplast" was an East German invention, used in Trabants (of course) and fortunately it can be easily recycled into cinder blocks. Russian cars are made of steel, with a high scrap content that causes it to rust very quickly, as anybody who owned a mid 70s Fiat or Lancia could attest.

  • CuoreSprtv CuoreSprtv on May 28, 2008

    What he probably trying to do is to make foreign makers assemble cars in Russia as many do right now. Ford, Renault, BMW and few others. Also Russian cars are very basic but last forever when taken care of properly (know it from personal experience) and have to endure some of the worst roads on earth. Some of the Nivas are actually pretty good off road and last forever. Also GAZ just bought old Sebring line from Chrysler, and selling it as Siber or something

  • Martin Schwoerer Martin Schwoerer on May 28, 2008

    Exactly how many used cars (five years and older) are currently being imported into the U.S.? Are the import tariffs favorable?

  • ApexAlex ApexAlex on May 29, 2008

    there are (tens of?) THOUSANDS of 5-yr old and older japanese cars available. ridiculous regs make it uneconomical for japanese to keep cars more than 5 yrs old (just barely broken in, in less stringent countries). i understand many new car dealers in new zealand folded, due to flood of used japanese cars with many many years of useful service left in 'em. not sure if it still happens, but i once heard as soon as russian freighters hit japanese ports, crewmen would head for used car lots. presumably to buy AS MANY cars as they had cash for. to resell for substantial profits back in russia.