Business in Brief

Highland Jumps on CEO



Highland Gold Mining, a gold producer part-owned by Roman Abramovich, climbed the most since at least December 2002 in London trading after appointing a new CEO.

The miner said it selected Valery Oif from Abramovich's Millhouse holding company as its chief. Its shares jumped 16.75 pence, or 62 percent, to 44 pence as of 4:33 p.m. in London. (Bloomberg)




Price Freeze for 2 Coal Firms



Raspadskaya and Evraz Group were ordered to freeze coking-coal prices until Jan. 1, said Alexei Ulyanov, head of industrial supervision at the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service, Interfax reported Wednesday.

The companies, which the watchdog found guilty of abusing their dominant positions in the coal market, were told to keep prices for the steelmaking ingredient at current levels. (Bloomberg)




Telenor Drops N.Y. Suit



HELSINKI -- Telenor, the Nordic region's biggest phone company, said Wednesday that it dropped its lawsuit against Altimo and Eco Telecom in New York and will continue to pursue claims against the pair elsewhere, including the arbitration court in Geneva.

Telenor will continue its claim against Farimex in New York, Telenor spokesman Paal Kvalheim said. The company repeated that it believed Farimex to be an affiliate of Alfa Group, Altimo's parent. (Bloomberg)




Russia's Caspian Pipe Stake



LONDON -- Oman agreed to sell its 7 percent stake in the Chevron-led Caspian Pipeline Consortium to Russia, Energy Intelligence Group reported Wednesday, citing an official familiar with the transaction.

The sale was agreed on during a visit by Transneft head Nikolai Tokarev to Muscat, the news service said. Oman had valued its stake, held by Oman Oil, at $400 million to $500 million. (Bloomberg)




PPF Loan to Eldorado



PPF Group agreed to provide a loan to Eldorado Group and said Wednesday that it might buy a majority stake in the electronics retailer to capitalize on swelling demand.

The loan will be made in two parts, the Czech firm said, without specifying the size. PPF said it might acquire "a substantial, up to majority" stake in Eldorado. (Bloomberg)




'08 Inflation at 10% So Far



The inflation rate reached 10 percent in the year through Monday as egg and meat prices rose, the State Statistics Service said Wednesday.

Consumer prices rose 0.3 percent since the beginning of the month and 0.1 percent in the week ending Monday, the service said. (Bloomberg)




Rosneft Repays Yukos Loans



Rosneft said Wednesday that it paid the last of a $22 billion bridge loan it used to buy assets of Yukos.

The final $2.3 billion payment was made amid "unprecedented" market turmoil, CEO Sergei Bogdanchikov said in a statement. (Bloomberg)




Rosneft Antitrust Fine



The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service said Wednesday that it fined Rosneft 300,000 rubles ($11,700) for not handing over information related to an investigation into fuel prices on time.

Rosneft should have responded by Aug. 1, the service said. Rosneft said it had not been officially informed of the regulator's decision. (Bloomberg)