War in Ukraine: hit by sanctions, the first McDonald’s in Russia lowers the curtain

As part of sanctions due to the war in Ukraine, McDonald’s yesterday announced the temporary closure of its 850 restaurants in Russia. The first to have opened in the country, Pushkin Square in Moscow, lowers its curtains on March 8.

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We had seen it on televisions all over the world when it opened 32 years ago. The McDonald’s on Pouchkine Square will close soon. Ironically, it has just been renovated. Faithful among the faithful, Yekaterina, a sixty-something Muscovite, was there on the day of its inauguration. She had stood in line for three hours to get a burger. “I was 35she recalls. There were a lot of people. It was completely new. The country was changing.

The arrival of McDonald’s in Moscow was then the sign of the beginning of a new era. On Russian social networks, many Internet users, sensitive to this symbolism, react to the news of this closure by commenting “Back to the USSR“Another regular at the establishment, Maxime, is disappointed by this closure: “I work nearby, it was convenient. I won’t be able to eat breakfast anymore. I will fall back on the kebabs!

“They sanction us, well we, we won’t come anymore.”

Boris, a Muscovite

at franceinfo

Others are delighted that the masks are falling: “Are they closing McDonald’s? Thank God !“comments Boris. But many Russians feel that they are being punished. Yekaterina notices that store closings are increasing in Moscow.”I have the feeling that we are trying to deprive us of something. But the companies that leave will be replaced by others, for example by Korean or Chinese companies that did not have access to our market until then..

To date, nearly 300 international companies have announced their departure or the restriction of their activities in Russia.

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