Nunavut Post

Thursday, November 30, 2023

McDonald’s is quiet on why some locations still open in Russia


Key takeaways: 

  • Experts say McDonald’s is still serving up burgers, probably independently-run franchises.
  • This McDonald’s diner at Moscow’s Domodedovo airport was rushing with consumers on Friday.

After publicly declaring it was suspending operations in Russia three weeks ago, McDonald’s has gone quiet regarding why some restaurants are still open for business. 

This week, CBC News visited two Moscow McDonald’s serving up burgers and fries, and there are reports online that other Russian sites also stay operational. 

Despite numerous questions, McDonald’s hasn’t clarified why these restaurants haven’t closed down. 

However, the U.S.-based fast-food chain was open regarding its plans on March 8 when it declared that all 850 locations in Russia would shut temporarily to oppose the nation’s attack on Ukraine. 

“We join the world in denouncing aggression and violence and praying for peace,” said McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski in a report.

Also read: Army probing Arctic military exercise that directed to search and rescue, medevac

McDonald’s has gone quiet regarding why some restaurants are still open for business

McDonald’s entered several multinationals, including other fast-food chains, suspending firms in Russia following social media pressure. But some of those chains, such as Burger King, Subway, and KFC, continue to face scrutiny because, although they ended corporate operations, their franchise-owned locations stay open for business.

In reply to an email inquiry, McDonald’s told CBC News on March 10 that all its Russian locations would shut, including franchisee-owned restaurants.

But shortly after McDonald’s closed its Russian locations on March 14, reports appeared that some remained open.

The previous week, Russian news outlet RIA Novosti said that, according to a report from McDonald’s, a number of its franchises in Moscow were still working. 

CBC News saw a McDonald’s restaurant at Moscow’s Leningradsky railway station and found it filled with customers. Most seats were occupied in the dining room, and there was a long line of consumers waiting to pick up their orders. 

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