Chinese firms are staying put in Russia for the moment despite a growing exodus of Western companies — albeit bracing for growing uncertainty — taking a cue from Beijing's stance of refraining from criticizing Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.

Even as Apple, Nike, Netflix, H&M and many other Western companies have cut or paused business in Russia amid a tide of sanctions and international criticism of President Vladimir Putin's actions, Chinese firms so far have stayed largely silent about their operations in Russia.

The Chinese government, which struck a "no limits" partnership accord with Russia just weeks before Moscow's Feb. 24 invasion, has blamed NATO expansion for the crisis and urged talks to resolve the situation. On social media, the Chinese public has shown overwhelming support for Russia's attack, which Moscow calls a "special operation."