McDonald's in Moscow reopens after 3-month shutdown

McDonald’s Corp.’s largest restaurant in Russia reopened after local officials shuttered the location for three months, an optimistic sign for a company trying to return to business as usual in the country.

The outlet, situated in Moscow’s Pushkin Square, resumed business today, said Svetlana Polyakova, a spokeswoman for McDonald’s Russia. Two more Moscow restaurants that were forced to shut will reopen this month and in January, respectively, after modernizing their interiors and equipment, she said.

The resumption of operations at Pushkin Square follows a clash between McDonald’s and Russian consumer-safety regulators, who stepped up inspections of restaurants and ordered some to be closed. The troubles accompanied mounting geopolitical tensions over the conflict in Ukraine. After the U.S. and European Union imposed sanctions on Russia, President Vladimir Putin struck back with an import ban on certain foods.

There have been about 250 safety probes into McDonald’s restaurants in Russia this year, Polyakova said. Six outlets remain closed after court decisions -- two in Moscow, one in Sochi and three in Volgograd -- and the company will appeal their shutdown, McDonald’s said in a statement on its website.

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