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Archive for Economy, Business, Investment, Trade

Most Russian Students Want to Find Jobs Abroad

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(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

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(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

Oil Well file photo

(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

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(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

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

(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

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(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

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(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

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(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

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

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

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(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

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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

Russian stocks rise as Putin backs peaceful resolution of Ukraine crisis

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Lossan, RBTH – June 26, 2014) Russian ruble has made rapid gains in value against the dollar and euro following statements made by Vladimir Putin. The Russian president declared his support for a peaceful resolution of the Ukrainian crisis after a meeting in Vienna with Austrian President

U.S. Business Groups to Run Ads Attacking Fresh Russia Sanctions

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – June 26, 2014) Two main business lobbies in the U.S. plan to publicly challenge White House foreign policy regarding Russia by taking out advertisements in the nation’s top three newspapers to warn that imposing additional sanctions against Moscow will only harm U.S interests. The U.S. Chamber of

Russian stocks hit 5-month high as Putin rescinds right to use military force in Ukraine

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow – June 25, 2014) Russian stocks hit a five-month high on June 24 after President Vladimir Putin asked Russia’s upper house of parliament to repeal a law that granted him the right to use military force in Ukraine, as investors speculate the standoff with the

Russia has largest share of female top managers

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(Business New Europe – bne.eu – June 20, 2014) In Soviet times you knew when something was about to be fixed when the ladies with the white scarves on the heads turned up with their toolboxes and buckets. One of the real successes of communism was to elevate the role of women in the work

RIA Novosti: Russia to Contest West’s Unilateral Economic Sanctions in WTO

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ST. PETERSBURG, June 20 (RIA Novosti) – Moscow intends to refer the issue of unilateral economic sanctions imposed on Russia by the West to the World Trade Organization, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Friday. “When the United States imposed on Russia sanctions that create negative consequences for foreign trade, we decided to challenge them

Russian equities – the next leg up faces hurdles

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(Business New Europe – bne.eu – COMMENT: Peter Szopo of Erste Asset Management – June 18, 2014) [Charts here http://www.bne.eu/content/comment-russian-equities-next-leg-faces-hurdles] The latest Russian stock rally was strong but short. It started in the last week of April and may have ended already in mid-June, as the situation in Ukraine began deteriorating once more. The main

Ukrainian ‘Black Hole’ Weighs Heavy On European Business in Russia

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – June 18, 2014) Politics took front stage at the flagship conference of the Association of European Business, or AEB, on Tuesday, where foreign companies with committed interests in Russia grappled with the economic fallout of the unfolding crisis in Ukraine. Business as something relatively immune to political

INTERVIEW: Andrei Sharonov – sweating the chernovniki

Skolkovo File Photo

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris in Moscow – June 17 2014) Summer has finally come to Moscow and the main hall in the Red October chocolate factory that sits on the River Moskva across from the Kremlin is buzzing with young workers flapping about in flip-flops or hunkered over computers writing code.

Russia To Test Migrant Workers On Country’s History

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(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Farangis Najibullah and Umid Bobomatov – June 13, 2014) So you want to work in Russia? You may be a skilled bricklayer — but do you know when Ivan the Terrible reined in the boyars? Or when the Polish-Lithuanian forces were expelled from Muscovy? When Peter the Great founded St. Petersburg? No? Well

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