Alibaba has announced plans to expand further into the Russian market. The company’s Director General of its Russian branch, Mark Zavadsky, revealed to reporters this week that the plan was to work more “with local Russian companies”. Echoing CEO Jack Ma’s comments in June, Zavadsky said that the expansion will have three phases beginning with the shipping of items from China into Russia. He added that Alibaba would then launch a project that would allow Russian retailers to send items to China under a “simplified customs clearance”. The move is expected to enable Alibaba to significantly reduce its shipping time to larger Russian cities, allowing home deliveries to take place well within a week of ordering.