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Interfax: Sanctions against Russia already affecting production of tight reserves, could impact shelf

Oil Worker file photo

KHANTY-MANSIISK. Sept 10 (Interfax) – The sanctions imposed by the EU and U.S. against Russia are already affecting the production of tight reserves, Russian Natural Resources Minister Sergei Donskoi said at a briefing in Khanty-Mansiisk. “The sanctions, first due to technology, have not yet impacted [the country's economy], but are already affecting the production of

Interfax: State obligation is to defend business from illegitimate actions of foreign countries, companies – Medvedev

File Photo of Dmitry Medvedev Before Gold Flag with Elaborate Design

GORKI. Sept 9 (Interfax) – The state will continue to provide support to Russian business amid the Western sanctions, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said during a meeting with NOVATEK (MOEX: NVTK) CEO Leonid Mikhelson. “You can have no doubt that in the face of such unfair actions the state has always supported and will

Consumers Stay Away From Moscow’s Malls as Sanctions Deepen Russia’s Slump

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – September 9, 2014) Nearly 25 percent fewer people visited Moscow’s malls in the week leading up the start of the school year than in the same period of 2013, a survey said, indicating that Western sanctions and an economic slowdown are hitting Russian consumer demand. A report by consumer market

Interfax: Russia dramatically reduces imports of sanctioned products from non-CIS in August

Truck at Russian Border Crossing

MOSCOW. Sept 9 (Interfax) – Russia dramatically reduced imports of products that are under the food embargo in August compared with July. The food embargo was imposed on August 7, 2014. According to the Federal Customs Service (FCS), vegetable, dairy, poultry and pork supplies declined the most dramatically. So, in August the cost of imports

Interfax: Rosstat affirms 0.8% Q2 Russian GDP growth estimate

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MOSCOW. Sept 8 (Interfax) – The Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) has affirmed its preliminary estimate of 0.8% year-on-year GDP growth for the second quarter of 2014, the agency said. GDP was 17.697 trillion rubles in current prices in Q2. Rosstat published its preliminary estimate for Q2 in the middle of August. The Russian Economic

Interfax: Russian economy to grow 0.5 percent this year, possibly more, says Medvedev

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – September 8, 2014) The Russian economy is projected to grow 0.5 percent this year, and while this is not a very good figure, the situation in other countries does not differ much from Russia, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in an interview with Russian newspaper Vedomosti. “We have focused on significantly higher

RIA Novosti: Medvedev: Russia to Stick to Current Development Course Despite External Disturbances

Dmitry Medvedev file photo

MOSCOW, September 7 (RIA Novosti) – Russia is not planning to change its development course, despite being subject to external disturbances, according to Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. “The conditions for economic development, for the development of the country and people’s lives are certainly not simple. Speaking bluntly, as a member of the country’s leadership,

Russian Economic Ministry downgrades forecast for 2014

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(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH -September 1, 2014) The Russian Economic Development Ministry has considerably revised its forecast for economic development parameters for 2015-2017 for the worse. These include a drop in oil and gas production and lower oil prices. Experts predict that the forecast may be further revised, either

Business New Europe/RIA Novosti: European Commission to level new sanctions on Friday

Truck at Russian Border Crossing

(Business New Europe – bne.eu/RIA Novosti – September 3, 2014) The European Commission suggests limiting Russian state-owned companies’ access to European capital markets, as it prepares to possibly impose new tougher sanctions on Russia at a meeting on Friday, September 5. According to agency statements, the new economic sanctions against Russia, proposed by the European

Most Russian Students Want to Find Jobs Abroad

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 26, 2014) Three of every four Russian university students would prefer to work abroad rather than in Russia, Newsru.com reported Monday, citing a survey conducted by Career.ru. The survey revealed that 77 percent of Russian students found the prospect of overseas employment more appealing than working at home. Those

Economy faces challenge from fall in oil price and ruble value

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(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – August 25, 2014) Low price-per-barrel for Urals crude oil is putting pressure on the Russian budget On Aug. 18, Reuters reported that the price for Russia’s benchmark Urals oil fell to $98 a barrel – its lowest level since May 2013. Even as recently

Interfax: Russia could lose over 100 billion rubles from EU-Ukraine association – Putin

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MINSK. Aug 26 (Interfax) – The association agreement signed between the European Union (EU) and Ukraine could cost Russia billions and force it to introduce protective measures, said Russian President Vladimir Putin. “Due to Ukraine adopting zero duties on EU imports (which is to take effect almost immediately after the ratification of the agreement and

Russian consumers hardest hit by sanctions

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(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Kira Tverskaya, special to RBTH – August 19, 2014) Economists point out that the Russian government’s recent food ban is likely to backfire as restaurants and consumers look for new sources for favorite products Moscow’s home cooks and restaurateurs alike have spent the past two weeks scrambling to

Moscow’s Food War With West Could Hurt Russia Most

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(RFE/RL Explainer – rferl.org – Charles Recknagel – August 21, 2014) Moscow’s sweeping ban on food imports is meant as a slap in the face to Western powers for imposing sanctions on Moscow over Ukraine. But the ban is also causing food prices to rise in Russia, which is a major importer of food and has few immediate supply alternatives. Here

Struggling With Sanctions, Russia Faces Oil Price Crash

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – August 20, 2014) The price of Urals crude oil, Russia’s key export and the lynchpin of its government finances, fell below $100 this week for the first time in more than a year, after plummeting $15 in under a month. Russia relies on hydrocarbon exports for 50

Moscow Times: Putin’s Food Ban Splits EU on Wisdom of Russia Sanctions

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – August 18, 2014) The European Union’s united front on Russia sanctions seems to be buckling, as Eastern European countries hit hardest by Moscow’s retaliatory food import bans begin to question the wisdom of wrecking their economies in the name of a strategy that has seen the crisis

Russian Farmers Will Need Years to Fill Gaps Left by Food Ban

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – August 15, 2014) Russian politicians have declared the recent bans on Western imports a golden opportunity for Russian agriculture – but farmers and economists warn that upping production is a question of years, not months, and closing the market will not be enough to solve its problems.

Russia May Soon Return to Soviet-Style Price Controls

File Photo of Older Russian Woman Shopping in Grocery Store

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 15, 2014) After a 20-year hiatus, direct Soviet-style price controls on the retail sector may be coming back, as the government strives to fight price hikes in supermarkets following Moscow’s decision to ban swathes of Western food imports in retaliation for sanctions over the crisis in Ukraine. The Federal

Fewer Russians Worry About Inflation Despite Predictions of Higher Food Prices

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 13, 2014) Fewer Russians are concerned about inflation than they were a month ago, a new poll published Tuesday showed, even as analysts warned recession was inevitable and that a ban on many foreign food items would push up prices for consumers. The state-run Russian Public Opinion Research Center

Russia’s Boom Business: Forced Labor In Prisons

File Photo of Pussy Riot Members in Courtroom Enclosure, With Man Showing Papers to One While Female Guard Looks On

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Vladimir Abarinov – August 11, 2014) When Nadezhda Tolokonnikova arrived at penal colony IK-14 in August 2012, a deputy warden proudly announced: “As far as my political convictions go, I am a Stalinist.” Tolokonnikova soon learned what that meant in practice. One year into her sentence for “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred,” the Pussy Riot

Kremlin Undergoing Major Renovation to Lure Tourists

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – August 12, 2014) The Kremlin’s historic building complex in the heart of Moscow is undergoing a series of changes to make it more accessible to tourists, and the presidential administration’s unused offices may be torn down to restore the world heritage site’s “historic look.” Most of the

Interfax: Russian GDP growth slows to 0.8% in Q2 – Rosstat

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MOSCOW. Aug 11 (Interfax) – Russian year-on-year GDP growth slowed to 0.8% in Q2 2014, from 0.9% in Q1, the Federal State Statistics Service (Rosstat) said in a preliminary estimate. The Economic Development Ministry estimated the economy would grow 1.1% in Q2. Rosstat will unveil more details in the middle of September. The Econ Ministry

RIA Novosti: Russia to Use All Possible Measures in WTO to Contest Sanctions – Putin’s Press Secretary

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SOCHI, August 11 (RIA Novosti) – Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow has a wide range of possible responses to Western sanctions under the rules of the World Trade Organization that can be used by any member. “There is a whole range of measures and defined tools within the WTO which, of course, each WTO

Sanctions Would Ground Russia’s Major Airlines

File Photo of Airplane Approaching Runway About to Land

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexander Panin – August 7, 2014) The grounding this week of Russia’s low-cost airline, Dobrolyot, by European Union sanctions has exposed the vulnerability of Russia’s airline industry, which relies on aircraft leased from abroad that can be withdrawn at the push of a pen in Brussels or Washington. Russian airlines

Moscow Times: Who Is Benefiting From West-Russia Sanctions War?

Truck at Russian Border Crossing

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexey Eremenko – August 6, 2014) The recent Western sanctions, the harshest in decades, are meant to stun Russia’s economy. But one person’s loss is another one’s gain – and this is also true for companies and countries in a globalized world. Following the U.S.’s example, the European Union last

RIA Novosti: Poll Shows Happiness Index in Russia Remains High

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MOSCOW, August 5 (RIA Novosti) – Happiness index in Russia has remained at 78 points for the past three months despite the increasing sanctions burden, according to the country’s opinion research agency VCIOM. A public opinion poll conducted by the All-Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM) showed Tuesday that the “satisfaction with life” index has

Interfax: Russians give economic situation good assessment – VTsIOM

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW. Aug 5 (Interfax) – The figures of social wellbeing of Russian citizens are at record levels for the third month in a row and the index of assessing economic situations reached historical maximums in July, the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM) said on Tuesday. Sociologists calculated the index of Russian satisfaction with life,

New Western Sanctions May Severely Hurt Russian Economy

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Charles Recknagel – July 30, 2014) The latest round of EU and U.S. sanctions over Ukraine will restrict Moscow’s access to what Russia arguably needs most: Western financing and new technology. Here are five things to know about the sanctions and their impact. How much could the sanctions hurt Russia? This

Russia Beyond the Headlines Press Digest: U.S. and EU sanctions are pushing Moscow toward Beijing

Collage of Russian Newspapers

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Sofia Savina, special to RBTH – July 30, 2014) RBTH presents a selection of views from leading Russian media on the latest developments in Ukraine, featuring widespread reaction to the imposition of yet another wave of sanctions against Russia by the U.S. and the EU, as well as

Russia Beyond the Headlines: Russians less afraid of sanctions

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Kira Egorova, RBTH – July 30, 2014) A new survey shows that the number of Russians concerned about economic restrictions imposed by the West is steadily decreasing A new poll from the Levada Center has revealed that Russians are becoming less afraid of sanctions. The most recent survey,

Ukraine update

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(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Tim Ash, Standard Bank – July 24, 2014) What is now clear on the ground is that Ukraine is at war, and with significant casualties suffered now by both sides on a daily basis – tens of lives lost almost daily now. The conflict is also causing very significant

RIA Novosti: Kiev Receives Russia’s Risk Assessment of Ukraine’s EU Association

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BRUSSELS, July 23 (RIA Novosti) – Kiev received Moscow’s list of potential risks that Ukraine’s association with the European Union could present to Russia’s economy, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin told journalists. “Just yesterday, we received Russia’s perception of the potential risks,” Klimkin said on Tuesday. Ukraine signed the agreement on its association with the

RIA Novosti: Medvedev Says US, EU Companies Clearly Show Intention to Continue Work in Russia

Dmitry Medvedev file photo

MOSCOW, July 23 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow has received «clear signals» from US and European companies about their intention to continue work in Russia, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Wednesday. «We have received quite clear signals that European and American companies are set to continue work with Russian partners. Time is ripe now to use

Ukrainian Cows Kidnapped, Trafficked to Russia, Police Say

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – July 18, 2014) Against the backdrop of blistering diplomatic tensions between Moscow and Kiev, a 172-head herd of cows has been illegally trafficked across the Russian border, the Luhansk region branch of Ukraine’s Interior Ministry claimed Thursday. The herd went missing Wednesday night from a farm in Luhansk region’s Belovodsky

Russian Billionaires in ‘Horror’ as Putin Risks Isolation

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer, Irina Reznik, Ilya Arkhipov – July 21, 2014) Russia’s richest businessmen are increasingly frantic that President Vladimir Putin’s policies in Ukraine will lead to crippling sanctions and are too scared of reprisal to say so publicly, billionaires and analysts said. If Putin doesn’t move to end the war in

Russia to Challenge U.S. Sanctions at WTO

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Mark Lammey – July 21, 2014) Russia is planning to complain to the World Trade Organization, or WTO, abou t sanctions imposed by the U.S. over Russia’s perceived failure to help de-escalate the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, media reports said. The U.S. on Wednesday let rip with its third and

RIA Novosti: Ukraine Predicts Bilateral Trade with Russia to Cease

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KIEV, July 18 (RIA Novosti) – Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk on Friday predicted that bilateral trade between Russia and Ukraine could come to a full stop over the complicated relations between the two countries and European sanctions imposed on Russia. “My prediction is the following: preparations reqired for an almost complete limitation of trade

Business Mood Brightens, But Won’t Save Russian Economy, Study Finds

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – July 16, 2014) Economic sentiment among Russian businesses improved in the second quarter, but the effect was largely seasonal and shot through with troubling long-term trends, a study published by the Higher School of Economics found. As the mood in retail and the services industry brightened –

Russian Government Sets Up Four-Year Plan to Boost Productivity

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – July 14, 2014) In an effort to transform Russia’s oil-dependent economy into a sustainable engine of growth, the government has unveiled a series of legal and financial measures aimed at fulfilling President Vladimir Putin’s ambitious pledge to increase Russia’s labor productivity 50 percent by 2018. Approved Wednesday

Why Russia won’t start a trade war with Ukraine this time round

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(Business New Europe – bne.eu – COMMENT: Iana Dreyer of borderlex.eu – July 11, 2014) High-level officials from the EU, Ukraine and Russia are holding a trilateral meeting in Brussels on July 11 to address Russia’s concerns about how the free trade and association pact that Brussels and Kyiv signed in late June might have

Russia’s capital flight hits 75 billion dollars

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

(Interfax – Moscow, July 9, 2014) According to an assessment by the Central Bank of Russia, the net export of capital by banks and companies from the Russian Federation in the first half of 2014 was 74.6bn dollars. That is 120 per cent higher than in the first half of 2013 (33.7bn dollars), the Bank

RIA Novosti: Ukrainian Crisis Harmless for Russian Financial System – Central Bank

Russian Central Bank file photo

MOSCOW, July 8 (RIA Novosti) – The consequences for the Russian financial system if the crisis in Ukraine further escalates will be limited, according to a review of financial stability conducted by the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) for the fourth quarter of 2013 and the first quarter of 2014. “The possible direct consequences for

How Bulgaria’s Bank Run Affects Ukraine’s European Dream

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Ian Wishart, Elizabeth Konstantinova – July 3, 2014) Joining the European Union was meant to give Bulgaria a fresh start. Try telling that to Anna Dimitrova. “Bulgaria didn’t gain from the EU as much as it could have, because it’s mismanaged by corrupt politicians,” said Dimitrova, a law student, in central

Concern in Russia as foreign tourist numbers slump

File Photo of Airplane Approaching Runway About to Land

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Viktor Kuzmin, special to RBTH – July 3, 2014) Tourist operators in Russia have expressed alarm at a substantial drop in the number of foreign visitors coming to the country in 2014. Key figures in the tourist industry speculate that the fall in tourist numbers may be a

RIA Novosti: US Exports to Russia Hit Record Levels in May Despite Sanctions

File Photo of Cash, Coins, Line Graph

MOSCOW, July 4 (RIA Novosti) – US exports to Russia rose 21 percent and reached a record high of $1.25 billion in May, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, an arm of the US Department of Commerce. During the same month, American exports to the EU and China increased by only 2.5 percent and

McDonald’s to Open for First Time in 30 Russian Cities

File Photo of Russian McDbnald's Crew with U.S. Diplomat

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – July 2, 2014) McDonald’s plans to open 70 restaurants in 30 Russian cities by the end of this year, significantly expanding its reach into cities that were never home to the fast food empire before, McDonald’s development director in Russia told ITAR-Tass on Tuesday. “We’ll have restaurants in Siberia, in the

Why Putin Is in Trouble With 86% Approval

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com –  Evgenia Pismennaya, Henry Meyer, Brad Cook – June 27, 2014) One month he wins the Olympics and kudos from world leaders. The next he grabs Crimea and gets kicked out of their most exclusive club. Now he’s facing a recession with few tools to fight it save the public’s love. Even

RIA Novosti: Candidate Status for Ukraine Difficult to Predict – EU Commissioner

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BRUSSELS, June 27 (RIA Novosti) – Ukraine’s chances of attaining candidate status for membership in the European Union are hard to predict, Stefan Fuele, EU Commissioner for Enlargement said. “We are not at the stage when we could even speculate about the candidate status. We just signed the association agreement, it needs to be ratified,

NEWSLINK: Ukraine Signs Trade Agreement With European Union

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["Ukraine Signs Trade Agreement With European Union" - New York Times - ANDREW HIGGINS and DAVID M. HERSZENHORN - June 27, 2014] The New York Times reports on Ukraine and the European Union reaching a sweeping trade deal, one that had been the original impetus for protests effectively upending the earlier Ukrainian regime of Viktor Yanukovych. Meanwhile, Russia

Follow the Money to Putin Inc. to See Why U.S. Struggles With Russia

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(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Alan Katz, Jesse Drucker, Irina Reznik – June 25, 2014) To see why U.S. economic sanctions against Russia are likely to have limited impact, follow the spending of a small Delaware-incorporated, Nasdaq-traded television company named CTC Media Inc. (CTCM) While CTC Media has a market capitalization of just $1.7 billion, it’s

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