MOSCOW, October 8 (RIA Novosti) - US Ambassador to Russia John F. Tefft and the President of Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP) Alexander Shokhin, have discussed the business climate in Russia and the perspectives of its economic ties with G7 countries, a statement on the US embassy's Facebook page said Wednesday.
"Ambassador Tefft met with the President of Russia's Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs Alexander Shokhin. They discussed Russia's latest legislative and legal actions, which are detrimental to its business climate, the key economic reforms that would strengthen the country's economy and the steps that the Russian government could take to improve economic relations with the G7 countries," the statement reads.
Russia joined the Group of Seven leading industrial nations in 2008 and was supposed to host G8 summit in Sochi on June 4-5, 2014. Late in March, the leaders of the other seven world powers decided to suspend the G8 and refused to attend the Sochi summit because of Crimea's reunification with Russia and Moscow's stance toward the situation in Ukraine.
The United States alongside with the European Union and several other countries also introduced several rounds of economic sanctions against Russia, blaming Moscow for meddling in Ukraine's internal affairs — claims that Russia has repeatedly denied.
The Western sanctions predominantly target the banking, energy and military sectors.
In June, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov said that Moscow was not considering a return to the G8, as "there is no such format at the moment." He noted, however, that Russia was open for cooperation, "if our partners send certain signals" He also said that despite the suspension of the G8, Russia would continue to participate in the work of the G20.
In August, Moscow responded to the Western sanctions, implementing a one-year ban on certain food imports from the European Union, the United States, Australia, Canada and Norway.