Vladimir Putin meets Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller

Vladimir Putin and Matthias Mueller

President of Russia, Vladimir Putin met Volkswagen Chief Executive Matthias Mueller in Moscow on Wednesday and stated he was ready to help the German automaker establish its business in Russia at a time of moving sales and weak demand.

Putin stated he comprehended the difficulties the automaker dealt with Russia where the nation’s once-rising auto market has succumbed to a continual financial decline.

“We are really happy that your business as a whole is succeeding, although we understand that there are certain difficulties,” Putin stated after the meeting, an unusual face-to-face between the Russian head of state and a significant European industrialist, after the West sanctioned Russia for its annexation of Crimea, Ukraine.

“We are always prepared to discuss any questions you need to help, you develop further in our nation.”

Volkswagen Group is the Russia’s biggest foreign automaker by sales and income. However its sales dropped 5 percent in Russia in 2016.

Some of the foreign automakers including General Motors have given up Russia, however Volkswagen sustained financial investment, believing that sales will one day rise to their 2012 peak of nearly 3 million automobiles yearly from around 1.4 million automobiles at present.

The automaker makes automobiles at a factory located in Kaluga, 170 kilometers southwest of Moscow and begin production at new engine plant in the city in 2015. It has likewise two more production sites.

A market source stated Mueller’s meeting with Putin had been to talk about “exclusive benefits” for the automaker.

Volkswagen stated it was committed to the Russian market, where it stated it supplied 6,800 direct and 50,000 indirect jobs and has strategies for even more development.

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