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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Economic Forum Opens

While Russia has defied gloomy predictions of disaster and disintegration made six months ago, it faces new problems in the months ahead, including growing numbers of bankruptcies and rising unemployment, Russian experts said Wednesday at the opening of the World Economic Forum in Moscow. "Last year," said St. Petersburg Mayor Anatoly Sobchak, " ... People were saying reforms are gone. Nobody is saying Russia is going to disintegrate anymore. Marshall Goldman, the associate director of Harvard University's Russian Research Center, predicted increased joblessness. "It's a race between whether or not there will be enough growth of private industry to offset the collapse of state enterprises," he said. The World Economic Forum brings together 80 Russian and 80 foreign business leaders and leading Russian experts and government officials.