RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Middle Class Is Shrinking – Bank Report” – Moscow Times

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 25, 2019) Russia’s middle class has fallen by nearly one-fifth since the start of the country’s economic crisis in 2014, an analysis by the Moscow-based Alfa Bank has said. Low oil prices and Western sanctions have reduced Russians’ real incomes for five years in a row. Economists forecast that the population’s purchasing power will […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s 2019 ‘Direct Line,’ in a nutshell; Russia’s president spoke on national TV for four hours, but you can read this summary in five minutes” – Meduza/ Summary by Mikhail Zelensky, Translation by Kevin Rothrock

File Photo of Putin Sitting at Desk, Looking Down, Writing, During Call-In Show, adapted from screenshot of video at kremlin.ru

“National projects: The country needs to revitalize the economy, but first we need to figure out where to find the money for this development work. That’s why we raised the VAT [value added tax), and as expected it increased inflation, but only temporarily. The cabinet ministers are personally responsible for seeing their work through. Income and wages …. Healthcare …. […]

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Putin’s Annual Marathon Phone-In Will Focus His Attention Homeward; Protests, pensions and poverty will overshadow geopolitics during Putin’s annual live call-in show Thursday.

File Photo of Putin Sitting at Desk, Looking Down, Writing, During Call-In Show, adapted from screenshot of video at kremlin.ru

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Pjotr Sauer – June 19, 2019) Civil unrest and falling living standards are likely to dominate Vladimir Putin’s annual televised national phone-in on Thursday, depriving the Russian president of the opportunity to concentrate on foreign policy and forcing him to confront domestic problems. In the past few months, Russia has seen mass protests over the […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Michael Calvey Case Revisited: A Corporate Hit, a Bargaining Chip” – Kennan Institute/ Pavel Koshkin

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Pavel Koshkin – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/michael-calvey-case-revisited-corporate-hit-bargaining-chip) Pavel Koshkin is a research fellow of the Institute of U.S. and Canadian Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ISKRAN) and a contributor to Forbes Russia The American investor Michael Calvey, who was detained in February in Moscow on fraud charges, is back in the news again. Calvey, who has […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin touts Russia as a great power. But he’s made it a weak one.” – Washington Post/ Timothy Frye

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“… Moscow is playing an assertive role [globally] … despite … weakness. … If anyone has made Russia’s hand weak, it’s [Putin, in power for two decades with a] … failure to create a more dynamic economy …. Thanks to high energy prices and fiscal caution … [there are] large reserve funds, but the economy has stagnated …. in 2012, […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia’s Top Auditor Kudrin Blasts Corruption in Legal System” – Moscow Times

Alexei Kudrin file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 6, 2019) Russian economic growth is hampered by deep-seated corruption in the country’s legal system, the head of Russia’s auditing agency said Thursday. Audit Chamber head Alexei Kudrin told a St. Petersburg International Economic Forum panel that corruption in the Russian judiciary system goes back centuries, pointing to one of the classic Russian poet […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Own Government Warns His Campaign Promises Can’t Be Met” – Bloomberg/ Evgenia Pismennaya, Anna Andrianova, Ilya Arkhipov

Cash, Calculator, Pen

“… Putin’s own government doesn’t believe his ambitious campaign pledges to improve living standards are attainable. Officials have analyzed the $400 billion [National Projects] spending program … and found that the majority of targets will be impossible to achieve before … Putin’s term [ends] in 2024 …. Putin and … Medvedev have been briefed about the findings …. confirm[ing] conclusions […]

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Russia’s National Projects: Economic Reboot or Mucky Bog?

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Ben Aris – May 30, 2019) Ben Aris is editor in chief of bne Intellinews. He has been covering Russia as a journalist since 1993. While Moscow has been aggressively advancing its interests on the international stage, Russia’s stagnating economy means the country risks gradually falling behind the rest of the world and possibly facing […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “The U.S. Department of Energy’s Rebranded ‘Freedom Gas’ Is a Not-So-Subtle Dig at Russia” – Fortune

Gas Flame file photo

[scroll down for video] “… the Department of Energy … [has] touted the expansion of [a] liquid natural gas … facility … by saying that it would spread ‘freedom gas’ to the world. … giv[ing] ‘America’s allies a diverse and affordable source of clean energy’ …. Not only has the U.S. become largely energy independent … the shale boom has […]

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Nearly Half Of Russian Families Can Afford Only Food, Clothing

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – May 29, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/nearly-half-of-russian-families-can-afford-only-food-clothing/29970069.html) Nearly half of all Russian families say that they only have enough money for food and clothing and cannot buy items of longer-term use such as furniture and appliances, media reports cite data from the state statistics agency […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Economists Forecast 6th Year of Falling Incomes for Russians” – Moscow Times

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 29, 2019) Russians’ incomes will fall for a sixth consecutive year in 2019, experts from Moscow’s Higher School of Economics (HSE) and Russia’s Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA) said. Russia’s Economic Development Ministry has projected real incomes to reverse the five-year slump and grow by 1 percent in 2019, based on […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ukraine oligarch urges Volodymyr Zelensky to default on debt; Concern grows over Igor Kolomoisky’s influence on the novice president” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

International Monetary Fund Logo Over Ukraine Flag

“… Zelensky should … reject[] the [IMF] austerity programme and default[] on … external debt, according to his contentious oligarch supporter[] Igor Kolomoisky … [a suggestion that] will ring alarm bells with … western backers even though … Zelensky … said he would stick to the terms of Ukraine’s $3.9bn bailout. Concern among Ukrainians and western officials about … Kolomoisky’s […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Major Russian Cities Need 100 Years to Reach Moscow’s Development Level, Study Says” – Moscow Times

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 27, 2019) Russian cities with populations of 1 million or greater will need at least 100 years to catch up to Moscow’s level of economic development, according to research by the Strelka Consulting Bureau. The 16 cities contributed almost one-third of Russia’s GDP in 2017, more than half of which came from Moscow, the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Russian economy is stagnating” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“The Russian economy is stagnating … Putin’s plan to revitalise it with … 12 national projects is off to a very slow start. Preliminary Rosstat figures show Russian GDP growth in the first three months … [at] just 0.5% y/y … well below even … cautious forecasts. … [B]oost[s] … from … RUB25.7 trillion ($390bn) investments planned for … 12 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Economy Gives Putin Reasons Not to Extend OPEC+ Deal” – Bloomberg/ Olga Tanas

Oil Well file photo

“The OPEC+ pact is hurting the Russian economy, potentially giving … Putin a reason not to agree on an extension …. While higher crude prices can bring … additional revenue, production cuts are weighing on one of the country’s biggest industries. … [Putin] may have to weigh his desire for faster economic growth against the benefits of his alliance with […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Why are Russian stocks so cheap?” – Intellinews/ Ben Aris

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

“Investors into Russian stocks have almost given up on seeing any of the cash the country’s leading companies generate. The valuation of what should be some of the world’s richest companies are in the basement, as would-be minority investors don’t believe the management will share the billions of dollars in revenue these companies make every year. Russia’s stock market boomed […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Foreign Direct Investment Into Russia Is Falling; Russia is at the bottom of the Institute of International Finance’s list of emerging markets.” – Moscow Times

Men Sitting Around Long Oval Boardroom Table, File Photo of FIFA Officials Meeting with Vladmir Putin

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 22, 2019) Foreign direct investment (FDI) into Russia accounted for only 0.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) from 2015-2018, putting it at the bottom of the list of emerging markets, the RBC news website reported, citing the Institute of International Finance (IIF). The IIF figures exclude reinvested earnings to focus on “real” GDP. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s GDP growth slows in 1Q19, challenging the policy framework” – bne Intellinews/ Dmitri Dolgin (Russia ING)

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“Russian GDP growth slowed from 2.7% year on year in 4Q18 to just 0.5% y/y in 1Q19, well below expectations. Unlike most commentators, we attribute this slowdown to a pause in the state CAPEX rather than to the VAT hike. We also believe a policy response is more likely to come from the Finance Ministry rather than the Central Bank […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Banking on Politics: How Russia’s Banking Sector Clean-Up Affects Regime Stability” – PONARS Eurasia/ David Szakonyi

Elvira Nabiullina file photo

“Banking has increasingly become nationalized in Russia, raising concerns that all private banks may be forced from the market within 10 or 15 years. In the short run, this consolidation enables the government to continue funding its numerous and expensive commitments and thereby maintain social and political stability. David Szakonyi discusses the political consequences of this creeping nationalization of the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH AUDIO: “Russia Without Putin [Interview with Tony Wood; Includes Audio]” – Sean’s Russia Blog/ Sean Guillory/ Tony Wood

Boris Yeltsin and Vladimir Putin

“Q: Most narratives of post-Soviet Russia emphasize a break between Yeltsin and Putin. …. But your book[, “Russia Without Putin: Money, Power and the Myths of the New Cold War,”] stresses that there are continuities …. [A.] I see these two periods as successive phases in the evolution of a single system. … the core differences are really matters of […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia sees major integration capacity in China’s One Belt One Road project – Putin” – Interfax

Map of China and Environs, adapted from image at cdc.gov

SOCHI. May 13 (Interfax) – The relations between Russia and China are developing successfully, while Moscow views China’s One Belt – One Road initiative as fruitful and substantive, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. “At the beginning of talks I would like to convey the best wishes to my friend [Chinese President Xi Jinping] for warmness, with which we have been […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Overextending and Unbalancing Russia; Assessing the Impact of Cost-Imposing Options” – RAND

Mercator Projection Satellite Image of Earth

“This brief summarizes a report that comprehensively examines nonviolent, cost-imposing options that the United States and its allies could pursue across economic, political, and military areas to stress – overextend and unbalance – Russia’s economy and armed forces and the regime’s political standing at home and abroad. …”

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “[Re: Council on Strategic Development and National Projects] Macro and Markets with Alex Nice” – Bear Market Brief, bmb Russia/ Foreign Policy Research Institute

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

“… Putin chaired a major meeting of the Council on Strategic Development and National Projects with the cabinet and regional officials. … First, although Putin is only a year into his fourth term, there is already a sense of frustration and anxiety about the progress of the National Projects … the strategic underpinning of the six-year presidential cycle. Putin opened […]

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Fighting to be seen: how Ukrainian and Russian professional women are securing their place in public

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

In Ukraine and Russia, civil society and professional associations are helping women experts to raise their profile in the public arena. (opendemocracy.net – Olena Strelnyk – May 13, 2019 – opendemocracy.net/en/odr/female-experts-in-russia-and-ukraine-en/) Olena Strelnyk is a writer and researcher on gender issues. She is a doctor of sociology, and lives and works in Ukraine. “A 32-year-old blonde woman is now acting […]

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RUSSIALINK: “A National Disappointment: What Went Wrong With the Sukhoi Superjet 100” – Carnegie Moscow/ Anastasia Dagaeva

File Photo of Airplane Approaching Runway About to Land

“The Sukhoi Superjet 100 … has become a sociopolitical symbol of hope and disappointment. … launched almost 20 years ago as a dream of conquering the world … [but] turn[ing] into a thorn in everyone’s side. It seems that everyone, from government officials to airlines and passengers, is tired of the Superjet, which raises the question of whether the plane […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Can Russia halve its poverty level?” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris in Berlin

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“… Among … ambitious … – some say unattainable [-] goals [Putin] called for a drastic reduction in poverty between now and 2024, when he is slated to step down …. Can Russia really halve its poverty rate to 6.6% in six years[?] … [F]ast [economic] growth is unlikely. Even the government’s own estimate predicts lacklustre growth of about 1.3% […]

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Who Is Mr. Ivanov: Why Russia’s Middle Class Today Is Different

File Photo of Crowd in Russia Including Person Waving Russian Flag with Eagle

(Kennan Institute – wilsoncenter.org/program/kennan-institute – Maxim Trudolyubov – May 9, 2019 – wilsoncenter.org/blog-post/who-mr-ivanov-why-russias-middle-class-today-different) Maxim Trudolyubov is a Senior Fellow at the Kennan Institute and the Editor-at-Large of Vedomosti, an independent Russian daily. In the five years since 2014, the share of those in Russia who consider themselves middle class has shrunk from 60 percent to 47 percent. This is according […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH “Russia ramps up bond sales ahead of possible U.S. sanctions; Moscow’s $1.1bn issuance comes after April fundraising smashed records” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon, Nikou Asgari

File Photo of Facade of Russian Finance Ministry

“… [Russia’s] finance ministry sold Rbs73bn ($1.1bn) in rouble-denominated bonds … Wednesday[,] … part of a plan to raise Rbs600bn in domestic debt this quarter. … [after] a record Rbs400bn in April – four times [Russia’s] monthly average – feeding strong investor appetite for high-yielding emerging market debt. … [Analysts regard the efforts] as a pre-emptive stockpiling … [against] the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Health-Care Cuts Spark Protests in Russian Heartland” – Bloomberg/ Henry Meyer, Ilya Arkhipov

Medical Symbol with Pole, Serpents, Wings, adapted from image at lanl.gov

“The country has 100 billionaires, and yet more than a third of Russians can’t afford to buy two pairs of shoes a year.” “… Concern … that traditionally loyal sections of the population are turning against the authorities [have] raised an alarm in the government [sources say] …. Protests used to be confined to the big cities. Now they’re in […]

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RUSSIALINK: “3% of Russians Trust Officials’ Income Declarations – Poll” – Moscow Times

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – May 7, 2019) Only 3 percent of Russians believe that government officials submit trustworthy income declarations every year, according to an independent Levada Center survey. The 2018 declaration showed President Vladimir Putin earning 8.6 million rubles ($134,000), or less than half of what he earned in 2017. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s yearly pay rose to […]

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Have Sanctions on Russia Changed Putin’s Calculus?

Portion of U.S. Treasury Department Building Facade, North Side, with Sculpture of Alexander Hamilton

Since Russia’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine, Western powers have hit Moscow with economic sanctions, hoping to put a stop to President Vladimir Putin’s aggression. Have they worked? (Council on Foreign Relations – Andrew Chatzky – May 2, 2019 – cfr.org/article/have-sanctions-russia-changed-putins-calculus – Andrew Chatzky covers economics, energy, and geopolitics, and helps edit the Daily News Brief.) The United States and the […]

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Mark Galeotti: “The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia” – Pushkin House Book Prize Finalist

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Emily Couch – May 4, 2019 – themoscowtimes.com/2019/05/05/mark-galleotti-the-vory-russias-super-mafia-a65488) In “The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia,” Mark Galeotti draws on years of research to tell the grimly absorbing tale of Russia’s criminal underworld. Galeotti is a specialist in Russian history, security and crime who is a senior researcher at the Institute of International Relations (Prague); a regular […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “How the US could push Russia’s defense spending to the brink” – Stars and Stripes/ William Howard

Russian Jet Buzzing U.S. Navy Destroyer, adapted from U.S. Navy photo

“The United States should … drive Russia to spend money in a tit-for-tat power game that its smaller economy can’t support [a RAND study] said …. The West can exploit factors … making Russia more vulnerable, such as economic sanctions, fuel prices falling below peak levels, an aging population and increasing authoritarianism under … Putin … [but the study] also […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Hegemony of state in Russian economy deepens, warns watchdog” – bne Intellinews

Men Sitting Around Long Oval Boardroom Table, File Photo of FIFA Officials Meeting with Vladmir Putin

“… the state is no longer simply setting the rules of engagement, but attempts to regulate the whole economic system of the country, Federal Anti-Monopoly Service (FAS) watchdog warns …. [as is] evident on both federal and regional levels, where authorities are interfering in local business relations and engage in regional protectionism. … Before the 1998 crisis the state’s share […]

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Key to Putin’s Passport Offers to Ukrainians? Russia’s Shrinking Labor Force

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Russia Matters – Simon Saradzhyan – April 30, 2019 – russiamatters.org/blog/key-putins-passport-offers-ukrainians-russias-shrinking-labor-force) Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent decree to make it easier for residents of some separatist-controlled parts of Ukraine to get Russian citizenship has drawn criticism not only from Kiev but from key partners of the Ukrainian government, such as the U.S., EU and individual EU states. His subsequent statement […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin] News conference following working visit to China” – KremlinRu

Asia Map

(Kremlin.ru – April 27, 2019 – en.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/60396) Vladimir Putin spoke to journalists following the Roundtable discussions at the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon. There will be no opening remarks. I am ready to answer your questions. Question: Good afternoon. The Belt and Road is a very ambitious project – to the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin lauds China infrastructure initiative, warming ties” – AP

Map of China and Environs, adapted from image at cdc.gov

“… Putin praised China’s Belt and Road infrastructure initiative … underscoring warming ties between the neighboring powers. Putin’s comments … to a forum in Beijing appeared to downplay the potential for tensions between China and Russia. … [and] reflect Beijing and Moscow’s shared resistance to U.S. global influence. The Belt and Road is rapidly expanding China’s economic footprint in Central […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Putin: One Belt, One Road initiative lays down int’l relations principles that are relevant today” – Interfax

Asia Map

BEIJING. April 26 (Interfax) – Russian President Vladimir Putin has thanked Chinese President Xi Jinping for the invitation to take part in the One Belt, One Road forum, adding he sees that this initiative keeps developing. “It has proven to be immensely timely and successful. It is taking on a global nature and is starting to lay down the principles […]

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Putin, Dozens Of Other Leaders Gather In China For ‘Belt And Road’ Summit

Asia Map

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – April 25, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/dozens-of-world-leaders-arrive-in-china-for-belt-and-road-forum/29902631.html) Leaders from dozens of countries have begun arriving in Beijing to attend the April 25-27 Belt and Road Forum. China’s $1 trillion Belt and Road initiative seeks to create new rail, road, port, and energy infrastructure that links […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia is no place for young people” – Deutsche Welle

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

It’s almost impossible to find a decent salary and comfortable living conditions in Russia. For many young people, the only options are to build a life in Moscow or leave the country, says Anastasia Arinushkina. “… half of Russia’s citizens are unhappy with the size of their salaries and struggle to pay for health care and education, according to recent […]

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Interview: Russia Seeks To ‘Capitalize On Opportunities’ In Libya

File Photo of Ancient Roman Arch in Libya Framing Minaret and Palm Trees, adapted from image at cia.gov

(Article text ©2019 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Tony Wesolowsky – April 10, 2019 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/interview-russia-seeks-to-capitalize-on-opportunities-in-libya/29873341.html) The situation is escalating in Libya, where more than 30 people have been killed since fighting broke out on April 4, when forces loyal to Libyan strongman Khalifa Haftar launched an offensive against the internationally […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Military Drills in Arctic Aim to Counter Russia, but the First Mission Is to Battle the Cold” – New York Times/ Helene Cooper

Arctic Map

“… the melting polar ice cap has opened up the Arctic, disappearing what used to be an impenetrable barrier between North America and Russia. … NATO is rushing to try to catch up. … ‘Russia is increasing its military presence in the Arctic,’ said … a [NATO] spokesman … [NATO is] ‘monitoring Russia’s Arctic buildup carefully.’ In fact, Russia has […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Calvey to stay under house arrest till mid-summer” – Interfax

Kremlin and River

MOSCOW. April 12 (Interfax) – The Basmanny District Court in Moscow has extended the period of house arrest of Baring Vostok investment fund founder and senior partner Michael Calvey, who is charged with fraud, until July 14, an Interfax correspondent reported from the courtroom. “The court will grant the request of investigators. The court will also extend the period of […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Richest 3% Russians Hold 90% of Country’s Financial Assets – Study” – Moscow Times

Hand Pulling Cash from Envelope

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 12, 2019) The wealthiest 3 percent of Russians owned 89 percent of all financial assets in 2018, according to joint research by the Higher School of Economics and the state-run VEB Bank. This is the first time a comprehensive study of wealth inequality has been attempted in Russia, the Kommersant business daily reported on […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “All About the U.S. Sanctions Aimed at Putin’s Russia” – Bloomberg/ Henry Meyer, Laurence Arnold, Olga Tanas, Tony Halpin

Portion of U.S. Treasury Department Building Facade, North Side, with Sculpture of Alexander Hamilton

“… Since 2014, the U.S. has imposed travel bans, asset freezes and finance and trade restrictions against hundreds of Russian individuals and companies … a multinational effort …. 1. What U.S. sanctions are in place against Russia? More than 700 Russian people and companies have been targeted …. 2. Why were the sanctions imposed? … starting in 2014 after Russia […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s New Gold Rush Could Shake Up the International Monetary System; Russia and China might be considering a gold-backed digital currency.” – Moscow Times/ Bruno Macaes

File Photo of Gold Bars with U.S. Government Engravings, adapted from image at fbi.govA

“Russia is buying … [a] lot of gold … quadrupl[ing] reserves [within a decade]. Gold buying last year exceeded mine supply for the first time … Russia is about to become a net importer …. Are the Russian authorities preparing for a renewed clash with the United States … attempting to reduce … vulnerability to … sanctions? Or do they […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Effective Military Spending Is Around $200 Billion” – Checkpoint Asia/Richard Connolly

Russian Mobile ICBM Parade File Photo

“Russia maintains armed forces of around a million … compared with … fewer than 200,000 in the UK. … [and] procures and maintains far larger volumes of equipment across the whole spectrum … including [ICBM’s], nuclear-powered submarines … state-of-the-art helicopters and fighter aircraft. * * * … PPP-based measures … yield a figure of closer to $200 billion …”

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Russia Seeks New Arctic Oil Frontier

Map of Arctic Highlighting Permafrost, adapted from image at nasa.gov

Rosneft, Russia’s state-controlled oil company … the largest oil producer in the country, plans to develop an Arctic cluster of oil fields over the next five years. These plans by Rosneft – led by a close [Putin] ally … Igor Sechin – fit [Putin’s] ambition to develop Arctic oil and gas resources and adjacent regions, as well as the so-called Northern Sea Route – a shipping lane through Russian Arctic waters … from Europe to the Far East. …

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Russia Makes Progress When It Looks Outward and Suffers When It Turns in on Itself, Inozemtsev Says

Mercator Projection Satellite Image of Earth

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, April 5, 2019) Yezhednevny zhurnal offers another chapter from Vladislav Inozemtsev’s new book, An Uncontemporary Country, a chapter that demonstrates that whenever Russia has turned outward and involved itself with the rest of the world, it has made progress but that when it has turned in on itself, it has not only […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The UK executives helping Putin burnish Russia’s image; Meeting with top British businessmen could not come at a better time for the Kremlin” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

File Photo of British Parliament Building, Big Ben, Thames, adapted from image at loc.gov

“Eleven years ago [BP’s] Bob Dudley … fled [Russia] citing ‘sustained harassment of the company and myself’ and threats to his life allegedly directed by politically connected oligarchs and Russia’s security services. Last month … Dudley, now head of the British oil group, was back, telling … Putin … at the Kremlin that he and the British company ‘deeply appreciate […]

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