Business in Brief

Foreign Investment Body



The government has finalized the commission overseeing foreign investment and has increased its size from 15 to 17 members, a source in the government said, Interfax reported Tuesday.

It will be chaired by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, with First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov as his deputy and Federal Anti-Monopoly Service chief Igor Artemyev as secretary. (MT)




VimpelCom's Vietnam Deal



VimpelCom said Tuesday that it finalized its joint venture with Vietnamese state telecoms firms, which is set to be a launch pad for its Asian expansion.

VimpelCom said it had bought a 40 percent stake in the venture, called GTEL-Mobile, for an initial $267 million. (Reuters)




EU Pipeline Concerns



The European Parliament on Tuesday demanded stricter environmental scrutiny before construction gets under way on Gazprom's Nord Stream pipeline under the Baltic Sea.

In a resolution adopted 543-to-60 with 38 abstentions, the parliament also said Nord Stream must consult with other Baltic Sea countries before going ahead with the project. (AP)




Naftogaz Contests Debt



KIEV -- State energy firm Naftogaz Ukrainy said Tuesday that it owed gas trade intermediary RosUkrEnergo, partly owned by Gazprom, $897 million for deliveries and will pay up as agreed.

The company also called "careless" a statement made by the Swiss-registered middleman, as cited by Russian news agencies, that Naftogaz actually owed it $2 billion. (Reuters)




Finland Taking Its Toll



HELSINKI -- Finland may be able to retaliate against increased Russian wood export tariffs by making Russian transit traffic pay for using Finnish roads, Finland's Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

A study by the ministry said collecting payments might be allowed under international treaties and that Finland could also compensate its forestry companies for the export duties Russia levies on their raw materials. (Reuters)




Ruble's Rise Through June



The ruble rose an inflation-adjusted 2.9 percent in the year through June against the currencies of its 18 major trading partners, the Central Bank said Tuesday.

The ruble rose 8.8 percent in real terms against the dollar, and added 3.1 percent versus the euro, the bank said, citing preliminary data. (Bloomberg)




For the Record



Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin named Vladimir Pakhomov, first deputy chief executive of state-run arms dealer Rosoboronexport, as the president of United Shipbuilding Corporation, Kommersant said Tuesday. (Bloomberg)

Russian Technologies said CEO Sergei Chemezov is to become the chairman at KamAZ. (Bloomberg)

Russian Railways has agreed to pay annual interest of 8.5 percent on 20 billion rubles ($848 million) of new bonds, signaling higher borrowing costs for Russian companies. (Bloomberg)

Italian oil firm Eni said Tuesday that it was the first European company to sell gas directly to Russia after signing a contract with TGK-9. (Bloomberg)

Electricite de France and Inter RAO are mulling a joint bid for OGK-1, Kommersant said Tuesday. (Bloomberg)