Skip to content
Subscriber Only
Businessweek
Pursuits

Now Joined to Russia, Crimea’s Economy Is Sliding Downhill

A municipal worker in Crimea cleans the area at the World War II Memorial to the Heroes of the Defense of Sevastopol
A municipal worker in Crimea cleans the area at the World War II Memorial to the Heroes of the Defense of SevastopolPhotograph by Olga Maltseva/AFP via Getty Images

The geopolitical crisis touched off by Vladimir Putin’s annexation of Crimea seems to be easing. But for the 2 million residents of Crimea, another crisis is just beginning.

Despite the peninsula’s cultural and historical ties with Russia, Ukraine has been its economic lifeline, supplying everything from food and banking services to Ukrainian vacationers, who accounted for 70 percent of Crimean tourism. As those connections have frayed or broken, Crimea faces deepening economic woes.