Russian President Vladimir Putin has encouraged businesses to expand domestically before Western nations lift economic sanctions, allowing once again the sale of many foreign goods in Russia.

Russia’s economy is expected to contract 3.8 percent this year in the World Bank’s estimates, battered by the sanctions and capital outflows.

Speaking at a business forum Tuesday, Putin called on businesses to expand until the sanctions are lifted. Putin mentioned that some Western nations “are beginning to see the light” but he didn’t say what his hopes were based on.

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