Capital Flight Calculation Open for Debate

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Irina Filatova – Dec. 18, 2012) The real size of capital outflow last year was actually half as much as reported, and only reached about $40 billion, with the figure having no correlation to the investment climate, according to a survey released Monday. Some components considered by the Central Bank, such as cash leaving the […]

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Kudrin Slams Russia for ‘Creeping De-Privatization’

Empty Boardroom

MOSCOW, December 18 (RIA Novosti) ­ Former Russian finance minister Alexei Kudrin on Tuesday slammed the authorities for allowing “creeping de-privatization” of the economy despite the government’s commitment to sell state-run companies in order to raise their efficiency and lure much-needed foreign investment. “Despite the declared goals of privatization, we are witnessing creeping de-privatization,” Kudrin said at a press conference […]

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No new legal acts needed on privatization procedure – Shuvalov

Igor Shuvalov file photo

MOSCOW. Dec 14 (Interfax) – All of the procedures for privatizing federal property are enshrined at the presidential and governmental level; the legislative framework is adequate to what should happen with privatization in the coming years, and it does not need to be enhanced, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov said. “All procedures are now fixed in federal law, […]

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Russia Faces Economy Trap as Oil Decline Looms, EBRD Says

Oil Well file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer and Agnes Lovasz – Dec. 14, 2012) Russia, the world’s largest energy exporter, is becoming increasingly dependent on commodities and failing to prepare for falling oil output in 20 years, the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development said. Corruption, poor education, immigration barriers and state dominance in the economy, which curbs private innovation, all […]

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NEWSLINK: Russian politics: A new ideology for political ends: Vladimir Putin’s state-of-the-nation address

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Speaking with Flag Behind Him and Microphones in Front

[Russian politics: A new ideology for political ends: Vladimir Putin’s state-of-the-nation address – The Economist – Dec. 15, 2012 – http://www.economist.com/news/europe/21568431-vladimir-putins-state-nation-address-new-ideology-political-ends] The Economist reports on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s State-of-the-Nation Address, noting what it saw as a values-oriented focus: For a man known for his pragmatism ­ even cynicism ­ President Vladimir Putin’s state-of-the-nation speech on December 12th was heavily […]

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Russians favor immigration restrictions – poll

Migrant Workers file photo

MOSCOW. Dec 14 (Interfax) – The majority of Russians want the government to restrict labor immigration. The number of people favoring labor immigration restrictions has grown from 57% to a six-year high of 64% over the past 12 months, according to a November poll held by the Levada Analytical Center. The number of those who have not yet formed an […]

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Putin Targets Transparency of Offshore Companies

Empty Boardroom

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Irina Filatova – Dec. 13, 2012) President Vladimir Putin expanded Russian vocabulary Wednesday, as he called for “deoffshorization” of the country’s economy, a measure he said would help repatriate capital channeled to offshore jurisdictions. In his state-of-the-nation address, which covered a wide range of economic issues, Putin pushed for agreements with tax havens that would […]

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Russia’s Putin Expects Major Shift In Global Politics Within Next Decade

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(RIA Novosti – Dec. 10, 2012) Russian President Vladimir Putin thinks that Russia must find its place in the geopolitical transformation (of the world), but not on conditions of confrontation. “In this geopolitical transformation, we must find our place. Can we do it? Of course we can, with our vast territory, with our traditions, with our growing economy. But, without […]

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Deutsche Bank forecasts 4.2% economic growth in Russia in 2013

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Dec 11 (Interfax) – Russian economic growth will pick up in 2013 and reach 4.2%, while inflation will go down to around 6%, Yaroslav Lisovolik, a senior economist at Deutsche Bank Russia, says. Lisovolik told the press on Tuesday that one of the main reasons for such a relatively high rate of GDP growth in 2013 would be high […]

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Russian economy still corrupt but corruption level on decline – Belousov

File Photo of Two Persons Shaking Hands and Exchanging Cash

MOSCOW. Dec 9 (Interfax) – Rumors of corruption in Russia are exaggeratory and opponents take advantage of the Russian image of a highly corrupt country, Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov told President Vladimir Putin’s election agents on Sunday. “Corruption rumors are exaggeratory. This does not mean we have no such problem, but I will be honest: the idea of Russia […]

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GDP growth may slightly exceed estimate at 3.6% in 2012 – Belousov

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Dec 10 (Interfax) – Russian Economic Development Minister Andrei Belousov has forecasted that the country’s GDP may grow 3.5%-3.6% this year. “This year we are coming to 3.5-3.6%. Next year, according to fairly optimistic estimates, we will approach 4%,” he said at a Sunday meeting of Cabinet members and Kremlin administration officials with President Vladimir Putin’s election agents. The […]

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Political Analyst Sees No Signs Of Crisis In Russia

Kremlin and Moscow Environs Aerial View

(RIA Novosti – Moscow, 3 December) Political analyst Aleksey Mukhin believes that the authors of the Carnegie Centre’s report “The awakening of Russia” are somewhat late with their conclusions, some of which could have been partially accepted in December 2011 – March 2012. According to Mukhin, there is no reason to talk about a crisis in the country, including a […]

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Gazprom sends first LNG tanker via Northern Sea Route

Map of Barents Sea and Polar Environs

MOSCOW. Dec 5 (Interfax) – The Ob River liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker, chartered by the Gazprom Group (RTS: GAZP), successfully completed the world’s first LNG shipment via the Northern Sea Route on Wednesday, the Russian gas giant reported. The tanker, which departed from Norway’s Hammerfest Port on November 7, has arrived at the regasification terminal at Tobata Port in […]

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Russians happier, better off than last year – opinion poll

File Photo of Russian Crowd, with Russian Flag Being Waved

(Interfax – Moscow, 5 December) Surveys by VTsIOM (All-Russia Public Opinion Research Centre) sociologists have shown that the feeling of social well-being among Russians has increased over the last year. For example, the percentage of Russians who are satisfied with the life they lead has increased from 26 per cent in November 2011 to 40 per cent in November 2012, […]

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NEWSLINK: Russia may change its image in bid to find more allies

Kremlin and St. Basil's file photo

[Russia may change its image in bid to find more allies – Russia Today – Dec. 3, 2012 – http://rt.com/politics/russia-change-bid-find-128/] Russia Today writes on Russian foreign policy ambitions following an assembly of Russia’s Council for Foreign and Defence Policy. In part, Russia Today cited attendees as highlighting military spending, including conventional forces: Conference members also observed that in modern times […]

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Russia to offer substantive agenda during G20 chairmanship – Putin

G20 Summit Group Photo

(Interfax – Dec. 1, 2012) During its G20 chairmanship, Russia intends to offer a substantive agenda to its partners aimed at resolving problems facing all countries of the world. “We see the main objective of Russia’s chairmanship in concentrating the G20’s efforts on developing measures stimulating economic growth and the creation of jobs,” Putin said in a welcoming address for […]

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Russia: Debt Reduction Priority for G20 Nations

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, December 3 (RIA Novosti) – The world’s developed nations should not abandon their budget consolidation and debt reduction plans, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Monday. “The majority of developed countries with a high level of debt recognize the need to have debt reduction programs,” he said at a news conference at RIA Novosti devoted to Russia’s G20 […]

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Gazprom Tops Russian ‘Dream Job’ List – Poll

Russian Gas Facility file photo

MOSCOW, December 3 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russian state-controlled energy giants Gazprom and Rosneft, and state-run savings bank Sberbank top the list of where Russians most want to work, according to a poll published by the VTsIOM pollster on Monday. “Gazprom remains the most attractive employer for Russians. If respondents could choose a job in any large company operating on the […]

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NEWSLINK: The Illusion of a Rich Russia

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

[The Illusion of a Rich Russia – Moscow Times/Vedomosti – Dec. 3, 2012 – http://www.themoscowtimes.com/opinion/article/the-illusion-of-a-rich-russia/472315.html] The Moscow Times provides an English-language version of a Vedomosti editorial about perceptions and realities of wealth and poverty in Russia, holding that “Amid all of the seemingly good news, however, Russia’s poverty problem is far from conquered.” First Vedomosti recounts some of the Western […]

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Almost 80% of working-age Russians with disabilities are out of job

File Photo of Back of Wheelchari with Line of Persons in Business Dress in Background

(Interfax – Dec. 3, 2012) Only 20 percent of working-age Russians with disabilities are employed, the Labor and Social Protection Ministry said on Monday. “Just 816,200 out of 3.39 million working-age persons with disabilities are employed. Some 2.6 million persons with disabilities or 79.7 percent do not have jobs. The rate of employed persons with disabilities is 20.3%, percent,” the […]

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NEWSLINK: Georgia eyes double-digit growth, renewed Russia ties

Map of Georgia

(Georgia eyes double-digit growth, renewed Russia ties – Reuters – Margarita Antidze – Nov. 26, 2012 – http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/26/us-georgia-economy-idUSBRE8AP0NE20121126) Reuters covers Georgia’s expressed need for increased economic growth in the face of unemployment and low per capita GDP, with one hope being that trade with Russia will play a part: Georgia’s new economy minister says his country, beset by high unemployment […]

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Putin Ready to Revive Russia’s Far East Mega Plan

File Photo of People Working on Car Amidst Siberian Woodlands and Meadows

NOVO-OGARYOVO, November 29 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he was ready to rejuvenate government plans to create a mega state corporation to develop Russia’s depressed eastern Siberia and Far East. “The idea of a government corporation was discussed and I know that far from everyone shares this approach,” Putin said at a State Council meeting […]

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Better Business Climate Gets New Impetus

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Nikolaus von Twickel – Nov. 29, 2012) Business executives are urgently calling on the government to improve conditions for entrepreneurship, which they say remains massively underdeveloped because of stifling bureaucratic and administrative hurdles. If the country’s leaders do not act soon, they might put themselves in jeopardy, participants in a business conference said Wednesday. “Without […]

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Russian deputy PM says democracy depends on innovative economy

Skolkovo File Photo

(Interfax – Skolkovo, 28 November) Russian Deputy Prime Minister Vladislav Surkov has described innovative work as a priority political task because high technologies contribute to the development of democracy. “I think innovative work is a priority political task. It precedes party building, it precedes elections, it comes before everything else, because there will be no democracy without high technologies and […]

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USRF supporting only business, legal, educational projects in Russia – USRF chief

Map of Russia

(Interfax – November 27, 2012) The U.S. Russia Foundation for Economic Advancement and the Rule of Law (USRF), which is a U.S.-registered entity, neither can replace the defunct Russian branch of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) nor has any plans to do so, USRF’s chief executive said on Tuesday. USRF and USAID have completely different missions, Mark Pomar […]

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Medvedev Assures France on WTO Behavior

WTO Logo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Irina Filatova – November 28, 2012) Russia and France signed an agreement Tuesday on creating a council to develop economic cooperation amid growing criticism from the European Union of some measures Moscow has introduced to support local manufacturers following accession to the World Trade Organization. A protocol to establish the Business Cooperation Council was signed […]

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Putin to deliver video address Dec 1 on Russia’s presidency in G20 – newspaper

Vladimir Putin file photo

MOSCOW. Nov 27 (Interfax) – President Vladimir Putin’s video address on December 1 will highlight Russia’s priorities as the G20’s coordinator, the daily Kommersant wrote on Tuesday. “Putin’s special video address will highlight the strategy of Russia’s presidency in this organization,” the newspaper writes. Also, a Web site will be launched on December 1 to cover Russia’s G20 presidency, it […]

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Rosy poverty picture comes under fire: Critics are questioning new estimates of the size of Russia’s middle class

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Anastasia Matveyeva, Moskovskiye Novosti – November 26, 2012) Over the 2000-2012 period, the income of Russians has grown by 2.5 times. This has radically changed the country’s social structure, say two academics who presented a report at a Gaidar Readings conference in Moscow on Nov. 13: such conditions as poverty have practically disappeared and the […]

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Roadmap to reform

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Ben Aris in Moscow – Business New Europe – www.bne.eu – November 27, 2012 – Ben Aris is the editor/publisher of Business New Europe) The Kremlin is scared. As the Russian economy emerges from the 2008 crisis, it is sliding smoothly and quickly into stagnation. In response, President Vladimir Putin challenged his government to implement 22 roadmaps to finally address […]

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TRANSCRIPT: Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev gives an interview to France Presse and Le Figaro

Dmitry Medvedev file photo

(premier.gov.ru – November 26, 2012) Dmitry Medvedev: Good afternoon. Question: Good afternoon. Mr Prime Minister, you plan to visit France soon, next week. We know that you had good relations with Nicolas Sarkozy. How would you assess your cooperation with the new President of France, Francois Hollande? Do you expect any changes? Dmitry Medvedev: I believe that our relations with […]

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Likelihood of external shocks that would put Russia into crisis similar to 2008 is low – MinFin

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Nov 21 (Interfax) The likelihood of external shocks, which would threaten the Russian economy with a crisis similar to that of 2008 is low but Russia cannot control such risks and needs to be prepared for this possibility, Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev told journalists on Wednesday. “We believe that the likelihood of such an external shock is very […]

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Far East Development Hinges on Branding and Diversity

File Photo of People Working on Car Amidst Siberian Woodlands and Meadows

(Howard Amos – Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – November 21, 2012) Despite the establishment of a Far East Development Ministry in May, the area from Siberia to the Pacific coast lacks an effective administrative body to coordinate investment projects, according to Alexander Bazhenov, head of the Far East Development Fund. Decaying infrastructure, extreme weather conditions, a decreasing population and the […]

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Capital Outflow May Hit $70 Bln Says Minister

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, November 20 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russia’s capital outflow may reach $70 billion in 2012, more than the previous forecast of $60-65 billion, Deputy Economic Development Minister Andrei Klepach said on Tuesday. “We’ll specify the figure by December. Perhaps, it will be slightly larger [than the Central Bank’s estimate of $67 billion] at $70 billion, or may be less” Klepach […]

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Poll Reveals Savings and Wealth Trends

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com –  November 20, 2012) The material well-being of Russians has improved over the past 10 years, and there are fewer people who barely make ends meet, according to a recent study by the Levada Center pollster. The survey polled 1,600 people in October and showed that since 2002 the number of Russians easily capable of purchasing […]

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Russia to Stay Raw Materials Based to 2030 ­- Survey

Oil Well file photo

MOSCOW, November 20 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russia’s economy will remain primarily based on raw materials production until 2030, along with the remnants of high technologies like the nuclear and space industries inherited from the Soviet era, Rosiiskaya Gazeta reported on Tuesday, citing the latest forecast by Russian economists. The Global Strategic Survey 2030 was prepared by the Institute of World […]

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Social well-being indicators show a positive trend in Russia – poll

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – November 14, 2012) Most indicators of social well-being show a positive trend in Russia, Interfax news agency reported on 14 November, quoting sociologists from the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Centre (VTsIOM). According to their information, over the last month people’s perception of their financial situation has increased by two points (from 64 to 66), due to an increase […]

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Russia Traders Lose to Cows as Winter Hits Moscow Market

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Ksenia Galouchko and Michael Patterson – November 15, 2012) Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s efforts to give his citizens a better night’s sleep and ease stress for the nation’s farm animals are undermining his push to make Moscow a global financial center. Trading of Micex Index (INDEXCF) stocks has dropped 15 percent in Moscow since Oct. […]

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Putin Misses Business Group’s Forum

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Rachel Nielsen – November 15, 2012) At Wednesday’s congress of a major business lobbying group, the president of the country pulled a no-show, the first deputy prime minister told the group to avoid politics and a State Duma deputy personally fielded business complaints. The congress was the 10th annual gathering for Opora, a nationwide group […]

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Putin dissatisfied with share of SMEs in Russian GDP

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

NOVO-OGARYOVO. Nov 15 (Interfax) – Russian President Vladimir Putin thinks it necessary to raise the contribution that small and medium businesses make to Russia’s GDP. “The number of our small and medium enterprises is growing, but this level is still far from where it should be, given that in countries with a developed market economy the contribution of small and […]

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Russia Lowest BRICS in Economic Dynamism – Survey

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, November 15 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russia ranked lowest among the BRICS nations in the Global Dynamism Index (GDI) published by the advisory firm Grant Thornton International on Thursday. Russia ranked just 43rd in the Index of 50 leading economies on their dynamism in five key areas ­ business operating environment, economics and growth, science and technology, labor and human […]

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Putin Backs Russian Pension Revamp Opposed by Finance Ministry

File Photo of Two Elders Walking Outdoors

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Ilya Arkhipov and Olga Tanas – November 14, 2012) Russian President Vladimir Putin backed a planned pension overhaul opposed by the Finance Ministry, Economy Ministry and asset managers, who warn it would curb economic growth. The Labor Ministry plan would divert taxes from future retirement plans to meet current pension payments and narrow the state system’s […]

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‘Adaptation Center’ to Help Migrants Integrate

Migrant Workers file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com –  Natalya Krainova – November 13, 2012) Russia’s largest association of migrants opened an “adaptation center” in Moscow on Monday that will help workers from other countries learn Russian, obtain professional training and get medical insurance and bank loans. The center will help to fulfill goals set by President Vladimir Putin in late August to “secure […]

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U.S. to Be World’s Biggest Oil Producer, Overtaking Russia, Saudi Arabia By 2020 – IEA

Oil Well file photo

LONDON. Nov 12 (Interfax) – The boom in shale production will turn the United States into the world’s biggest oil producer by 2020, overtaking current leaders Russia and Saudi Arabia, the International Energy Agency said in its latest World Energy Outlook. Only a year ago the IEA was saying that Russia and Saudi Arabia would be the only candidates for […]

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Russia’s Q3 GDP Growth Slowest Since 2010 – Rosstat

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, November 12 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russia’s third-quarter GDP expanded at the slowest rate since the country began recovering from the global financial and economic meltdown in early 2010, according to figures released by the Federal Statistics Service (Rosstat) on Monday. Russia’s economy grew by just 2.9 percent in July-September 2012 compared with the same period last year, Rosstat said. […]

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Fewer Russians count on becoming rich fast – poll

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – November 11, 2012) Russians think that the greatest chance of getting rich fast today is to get an inheritance (23%). The share of people holding this opinion has grown over the years (from 17% in 2005), judging by a poll taken by Romir think-tank. In the years since the time of a similar study the number of pessimists […]

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NEWSLINK: Russia is on the verge of change, say Valdai Club experts

Map of Russia

(Russia is on the verge of change, say Valdai Club experts – Valdai Discussion Club – November 8, 2012 – http://valdaiclub.com/event/51120.html) The Valdai Club announces that a “survey of the Valdai Club international experts point to conflicting trends in the development of Russian institutions and society.” Click here to read the full article: http://valdaiclub.com/event/51120.html “The text of the report both […]

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McFaul to Focus on Economic Ties

Ambassador Michael McFaul file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Jonathan Earle – November 8, 2012) “I got a little bit of sleep, but I was up pretty early,” U.S. Ambassador Michael McFaul said Wednesday afternoon, shortly after his boss, President Barack Obama, declared election victory. Fatigue at first appeared to blunt his characteristic cheerfulness, but as the conversation turned to what Obama’s second term […]

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Kudrin Does Not See Way Back to Govt For Now

Alexei Kudrin file photo

MOSCOW. Nov 6 (Interfax) – Former Russian finance minister and current head of the Civil Initiatives Committee, Alexei Kudrin, is not upset with Dmitry Medvedev, who sacked him when he was president, and does not regret quitting the government. “I will say that at the moment I do not see the conditions for my return,” Kudrin said in an interview […]

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Putin Faces Anti-Migrant Tide as Opponents Tap Resentment

Migrant Workers file photo

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Ilya Arkhipov and Henry Meyer – November 7, 2012) Russian President Vladimir Putin’s opponents are looking to take advantage of a dip in his approval rating by latching on to rising anti-immigration sentiment. With the share of Russians wanting tighter immigration rules at the highest in at least a decade, Alexey Navalny, the country’s most-popular opposition […]

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Is the Kremlin Writing off Middle-Aged Russians?

Kremlin and Moscow Environs Aerial View

(Paul Goble – Jamestown Foundation – jamestown.org – Eurasia Daily Monitor: Volume 9, Issue 201 – November 2, 2012) The Kremlin has created a new “agitation and propaganda” (agitprop) administration, which will focus on the elderly, whom the regime hopes to influence or at least keep in its corner now, and the young whom it can only hope to affect […]

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