Russian Ministry of Sport wants to buy locally-made gymnastics equipment

“Import replacement” is one of Russia’s big goals after the economic sanctions were imposed on Russia by the Western countries in 2014. The idea of self-sufficiency and making Russia great again led to the government to promote manufacturing even in the areas which were not much affected by the sanctions. Such as sports equipment.

Pavel Kolobkov, the Russian Sports minister, said that currently there are local manufacturers of gymnastics uniforms and some gymnastics equipment, mostly for drills and conditioning. However, they do not yet plan to produce gymnastics apparatuses. They normally buy the brands that will be used at major competitions like Worlds and Olympics to ensure that Russian gymnasts can get familiar with the apparatuses. Which is a relief, considering what happened with the floor at this year’s Chinese Nationals. Since Russian corruption is as notorious as Chinese, it would be very likely that local manufacturers winning the bids would provide apparatuses of substandard quality.

Just recently the tender to produce the uniforms for Russian national teams for the 2017-2025 period was won by the company called Za Sport. The company was officially created only after the tender has started and the owner and head designer of the company is a daughter of a high ranked official in FSB.

The uniform, reminiscent of the “gopnik” fashion, was heavily criticized in the Russian media and Livesport reported that the Russian Olympic committee members were not all happy with the new look of the Russian team.

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