Swedish furniture giant IKEA said it will "scale down" its activities in Russia, after putting them on hold following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It will reduce its workforce and "start the process" of selling all four of its factories in the country.

"Businesses and supply chains across the world have been heavily impacted and we do not see that it is possible to resume operations any time soon," Ingka Group, which manages the majority of IKEA's stores, said in a statement.

"As a consequence, Inter IKEA Group and Ingka Group have now each decided to enter a new phase to further scale down the IKEA business in Russia and Belarus."

IKEA announced the suspension of its operations in Russia and Belarus last March, as a consequence of the war in Ukraine.

According to its statement today: "Since then it has been a priority to provide support and security to co-workers, and the groups of companies have been able to guarantee six months' salary for all co-workers, as well as core benefits.

"Unfortunately the circumstances have not improved and the devastating war continues. Businesses and supply chains across the world have been heavily impacted and we do not see that it is possible to resume operations any time soon."

Brand owner Inter IKEA, which is also in charge of supply, said it would start looking for new owners at its four factories and cut back on employees.

"The import and export of IKEA goods in Russia and Belarus remains on hold," IKEA said.

IKEA opened its first store in Russia in 2000 and now has 17 stores and 14 shopping centres under its business there, it said.

The statement continued: "Import and export of IKEA products to and from Russia and Belarus will remain stopped. The two Inter IKEA owned purchase and logistics offices in Moscow and Minsk will close permanently."