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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


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British Launch Business, Political Training Projects

At a small office in central Moscow, a London woman is gearing up for plans to teach young Russians the workings of Britain's parliamentary form of government. ""It is our feeling that the best way to shore up democracy here is to support education and entrepreneurship"", said Liz Bailey, Moscow representative of the Future of Europe Trust, also known as FET. To accomplish that, FET, a London-based non-profit group, is planning two business and political projects in Moscow. A series of four television programs aimed at teaching Russians the basics of starting a business was produced with the help of BBC TV. The first program, set to air Oct. 27 on Channel 1, covers developing business plans. Funded by a 10, 000-pound ($6, 000) grant from Britain's Know How fund, the programs are combined with video and audio tapes and notebooks. Sixteen programs are planned, Bailey said. Bailey is also networking with Russian universities and political parties to identify candidates for business and political internships.

An Easy Life, But Not for Everyone

Until recently, Moscow was a city where life was, in some respects, as difficult for foreigners as it was for Muscovites. Foreigners were restricted in their movements and lived under constant surveillance in closed compounds. They had to change money at an artificially high rate, and they missed out on the luxuries of life in the West. Three years ago, Stockmann was the only Western hard-currency grocery shop in town. Now, all this has changed. Foreign journalists, business executives and diplomats can travel throughout the country. They can live in a UPDK building or in a Russian apartment. There are over 30 hard-currency shops in Moscow, several top-class hotels, good restaurants, health clubs, car dealerships and a golf club. The only problem, beside the price tag on these services, is that it is becoming increasingly difficult to partake of such luxuries when human suffering and deprivation is so evident around us.

Yeltsin Earns Straus's Praise

Ambassador Robert Strauss of the United States heaped praise on Boris Yeltsin on Monday, saying that he believed Russia's first president was still ""as strong as ever"". Strauss, who is due to end his term in Moscow next month, expressed his faith in Yeltsin during a farewell address to the American Business Club, dismissing recent speculation that the president's grip on power was slipping. ""His government has done remarkably well"", said Strauss. ""I want to remind you of last April when there were threats about people like Andrei Kozyrev and Yegor Gaidar being ousted"". Strauss was referring to the last session of Russia's highest legislative body, the Congress of People's Deputies, which attempted to scale down Yeltsin's powers last spring and is likely to try again when it convenes this winter. Speaking informally to about 40 business people, Strauss evaluated the status of the Russian government and reflected on his short tenure as ambassador to the former Soviet Union and Russia.
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