According to a study by the Tebis Group, the volume of medical equipment imports to the Russian market has increased 53% over the past five years. In pre-pandemic 2019, there were 2,800 times more medical equipment imports to Russia than domestic production of these goods. Today, imports account for 80% of the Russian market for medical equipment.
However, the Russian healthcare sector is becoming less attractive to foreign manufacturers due to the difficulties of exporting. To help Swiss medical equipment exporters, on 17 May 2021 the Switzerland Global Enterprise and Swiss Business Hub Russia trade promotion networks held a webinar on how to correctly bring their products to Russia.
Tatiana Gaevskaya, Head of the Trade and Contract Logistics Division at the AsstrA international corporate group, gave a presentation at the event called "Peculiarities of import and customs clearance of medical equipment to Russia." She also shared tips for novice importers on how to make entering the Russian market easier and more effective.
"The first thing that a medical equipment manufacturer will need to decide is how, from a legal point of view, the products will be sold on the Russian market. Sales can happen via your own legal entity or, if you do not want to establish one, through a dealer or local representative. Which steps the importer takes next depend on this decision," shares Tatyana Gaevskaya.
Each of these sales approaches involves different organizational and operational details to consider. Opening a branch requires significant investments, while working with a dealer network does not guarantee a reliable supply chain. Working with a local Russian representative offers a good mix of benefits. AsstrA experts can take on this role to support companies looking to expand into the Russian market.
"Properly organizing transportation, customs clearance, certification, warehousing, and documentation requires a good knowledge of local legislation and legal processes. By outsourcing these functions, manufacturers can concentrate on developing sales while saving time and financial resources,” adds Tatiana Gaevskaya. “If an importer decides to start by opening a local branch, the AsstrA team can also advise on any issues that arise and help build efficient logistics chains."