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McDonald’s will leave Russia altogether – POLITICO


McDonald’s announced on Monday that it would exit the Russian market altogether after more than three decades, setting the stage for the sale of its 850 restaurants in the country.

The Chicago-based fast food chain temporarily closed its Russian stores in March in response to the Kremlin’s war on Ukraine, but continued to pay its 62,000 full-wage workers. Now McDonald’s says it is looking for a Russian buyer who will continue to pay its employees at least until a sale closes while it begins removing its iconic golden arches from stores across Russia.

“We have a commitment to our global community and must remain true to our values,” McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski said in a statement, adding that the chain’s presence was “no longer sustainable” in Russia. “Our commitment to our values ​​means we can no longer shine the vaults over there.”

The burger giant is the oldest American fast food chain in Russia. He opened his first restaurant in central Moscow in January 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall, to queues of thousands.

His departure symbolizes how dramatically relations between Russia and the West have deteriorated since President Vladimir Putin launched his new assault on Ukraine.

Nearly 1,000 Western companies have reduced operations in Russia since the war began in late February, including fellow fast food brands Domino’s Pizza and Burger King.

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