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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

RJR Nabisco to Expand

NEW YORK -- RJR Nabisco Holdings Corp., the No. 2 U.S. cigarette maker, said Monday that it would spend $120 million to expand a plant in Russia, one of its main overseas markets that has been plagued by slower cigarette sales.

The New York-based company's plant in St. Petersburg will become its second-largest factory once the expansion is complete. Its largest plant is in Tobaccoville, North Carolina.

RJR's problems in Russia stem mostly from the nation's weak economy. With the Russian 90-day interbank loan interest rate at about 60 percent, wholesalers are unable to stock up on RJR's cigarettes. In addition, the company is also expected to lose about $18 million in profit because of the Russian ruble's weakness against the U.S. dollar, analysts said.