Business leaders at the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) told CNBC that they want to see Russia reform and re-engage with the outer world, politically and economically.
Bernard Sucher, former country head of Bank of America Merrill Lynch in Russia who is now at the Russian investment firm Aton, told CNBC that Russia had to urgently address structural reforms.
"The structural issues clearly have not been addressed over the last couple of years and we've seen the impact in the decline in investment here," he told CNBC Europe's "Squawk Box" at SPIEF.
(Read More: Russian Luxury Estate Market Is on the Rise)
He added that Russia's resistance to reform had contributed its slowdown - seen over five consecutive quarters - a deterioration that prompted the country's economic ministry to cut the country's growth forecasts for 2013 in April, from 3.6 percent to 2.4 percent.
Russia was just "muddling" along, Sucher said. "There's not enough competitive stimulus in the economy…We've had words but no actions [on reform] - we haven't seen anything in a long time."
"What this economy needs is to see political change, changes to its infrastructure and reform and we need to encourage Russia to do that," he said. Reforms would give investors a "fresh" perspective on the country and could encourage them to invest.