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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Business in Brief

KrAZ Power Reprieve


National power utility Unified Energy Systems on Friday pledged not to cut power to the country's biggest aluminum plant, Krasnoyarsk Aluminum, or KrAZ, a spokesman for the smelter said.

"The electricity department of Krasnoyarskenergo has removed all supply limitations and cancels its planned cut of electricity to KrAZ," a telegram from Krasnoyarskenergo faxed from KrAZ said.

Krasnoyarskenergo, which is controlled by UES, had threatened to switch off the power supply to the smelter at 9 a.m. Friday in a dispute over payments.

A UES spokesman said the decision not to pull the plug was a legal one. "As far as I know the court forbade them to switch it off," he said.

UES says KrAZ owes Krasnoyarskenergo 814 million rubles ($28.1 million) in back payments and that it should be paying higher electricity bills. Russian Aluminum, which controls KrAZ, rejects the debt and says it should get special terms as a major client.

CPI Rises 0.3%


Consumer prices rose 0.3 percent between May 1 and May 7, compared with 1.8 percent for the whole of April, the State Statistics Committee said Friday.

The committee said consumer prices had risen 0.4 percent between April 29 and May 7.

Kasyanov: GDP Up 4%


Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said gross domestic product had grown more than 4 percent in the first four months of 2001, Prime-Tass reported Friday.

The government is targeting GDP growth of between 4 percent and 5 percent for all of 2001 after a record post-Soviet growth of 8.3 percent in 2000.

Kasyanov told a government meeting that consumer price inflation was expected to slow throughout the rest of the year and stay within the target of between 12 percent and 14 percent budgeted for 2001.

Interros-Rusia Ruling

The Moscow Times

A court in the Irkutsk region has ruled invalid a decision by the Irkutskenergo board of directors to sell 12.88 percent of Rusia Petroleum to Interros, Interfax reported Saturday.

Interros, which controls Rosbank, Sidanko and several other large industrial enterprises, acquired the 12.88 percent stake late last year for nearly $40 million. The deal was contested, and courts in the Irkutsk and Moscow regions banned Irkutskenergo from managing the 12.88 percent stake.

The Irkutsk region arbitration court arrested the share package after hearing a claim by FIK Renova-Invest, which sought to declare the share sale invalid.

TNK, which had also planned to buy the share package, expressed its disagreement with the deal between Irkutskenergo and Interros.

The company had said that the decision to sell the shares was made by the Irkutskenergo board of directors in the absence of a quorum and was, therefore, illegal. TNK also said that it had offered Irkutskenergo $6 million more than Interros for the share package.

Ruble Falls 1 Kopek


The ruble lost one kopek against the dollar Friday due to higher ruble liquidity as Central Bank intervention prevented a deeper fall, dealers said.

The ruble's weighted average for today settlement edged up to 28.9615 per dollar in a unified session of eight exchanges after 28.9511 per dollar Thursday.

Based on the results of the unified session, the Central Bank cut its official next-day rate to 28.96 rubles per dollar from the previous 28.95.

Traders said the Central Bank intervened both in the unified session and on the inter-bank market and prevented the ruble rate from falling.

Moscow Narodny Bank dealer Vasily Ushakov said the Central Bank had offered $100 million at 28.9680 rubles per dollar in the morning session. The Central Bank also offered dollars at 28.98 on the inter-bank market, he said.

Dealers could not say how much the bank had actually sold.

"There are a lot of rubles, but people are not yet in the mood to go [for the dollar]," said Ushakov.

Sibur Assets Increase

The Moscow Times

Sibur's long-term and current assets increased from 2.74 billion to 33.35 billion rubles ($1.15 billion) in 2000, Interfax reported the company as saying Saturday in a press release.

Sibur sales revenue in 2000 amounted to 32.22 billion rubles, compared with 3.77 billion rubles a year earlier, while gross profit amounted to 5.05 billion rubles, with pre-tax profit of 2.72 billion rubles and net profit of 1.9 billion rubles.

The company also announced plans for an additional share issue. Gazprom's share in Sibur will increase to 38 percent after the issue, Sibur vice president Sergei Zenkin said.

Zenkin said that Sibur's capitalization would reach $8 billion by 2005. The company plans to place its shares on the New York Stock Exchange by 2004, he said.