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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Foreign Letters, Names Get Pricey

BELGOROD, Southern Russia -- The fight for language purity has taken a costly turn in southern Russia, where authorities imposed a tax on foreign lettering used in advertisements and company names, Itar Tass said Thursday.

The use of foreign lettering in company names will cost owners 500 minimum monthly salaries, or 27.5 million rubles ($6,230) at the current level, according to a recent decision of the Belgorod regional administration, the news agency said.

Foreign names written in Russian lettering will cost companies 250 minimum salaries, it reported.

In Moscow, meanwhile, Mayor Yury Luzhkov has ordered that foreign-language inscriptions in advertisements be explained in Russian, the news agency said.

Under municipal regulations which have long existed in Moscow, foreign companies are required to transliterate their names into Russian in store signs or signboards posted throughout the city.