Why aren't nationalizations in Russia described as socialist?
I read in a 2015 PIIE brief titled "Russia’s Economy under
Putin: From Crony Capitalism to State Capitalism" that:
After nationalizing Yukos, the Russian government started
taking control of privatized companies in “strategic” sectors
such as oil, aviation, construction, power generation equipment, machinery, and finance. For example, in June 2006 the
government took 60 percent control of VSMPO-AVISMA,
a company that produces two-thirds of the world’s titanium.
In 2007, United Aircraft Corporation, a company that is 51
percent government controlled, combined all Russian companies producing aircraft. In 2011, majority state-owned Sberbank
bought Troika Dialog, the fastest-growing private investment
bank operating in Russia.
By mid-2015, about 55 percent of the Russian economy
was in state hands, with 20 million workers directly employed
by the government, equal to 28 percent of the workforce (Aven
2015). This is the highest share in 20 years, after the two privatization waves in the early and mid-1990s. In comparison, 22
percent of the workforce was employed by the government in
1996. After last year’s EU and US sanctions on some sectors
of the Russian economy, this share is increasing, as companies
and sectors that previously depended on private financing from
abroad now resort to financing from state-owned banks, and in
case of continued difficulties, their ownership is shifted to the
government’s hands. The longer the economic sanctions last,
the more private businesses will be squeezed out and the higher
the share of the Russian economy will be converted into state
So, why isn't Russia more often described as socialist these days? Is it because of a lack of an overt socialist ideology (of Putin) that "state capitalism" seems a more preferred term for what's happening in Russia?