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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Press Review

Vedomosti. Companies and Markets
Nezavisimaya Gazeta
Rossiiskaya Gazeta
Krasnaya Zvezda
Noviye Izvestia


British Petroleum's unprecedented $6.75 billion deal with Alfa Group and Access-Renova (shareholders of the Tyumen Oil Company) shows that foreigners have acknowledged that the Russian investment climate has markedly improved. Companies are now willing to invest billions of dollars into the economy. A story comments on the deal. A scheme of the new united oil company is also given. (1,2,Kommersant, 1,16, Gazeta, 1,9, Vremya Novostei, 8, Vremya MN, 1, Noviye Izvestia, 2, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 3)

In an interview astronaut James Newman, NASA piloted programs director, talks about the revision of the ISS construction project. He also discussed the schedule of flights to the station and about the long-term program of American-Russian cooperation in the space exploration sphere. (1,3)

A French-Russian news conference Tuesday showed that the leaders of both these countries have found a common language on major issues. A story focuses on some of those found. (2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 7, Gazeta, 3, Noviye Izvestia, 3,Vremya Novostei, 2, Krasnaya Zvezda, 1,3, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 6, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 2, MK, 2)

A new draft bill concerning the mass media is expected to be submitted to the State Duma in a couple of days on behalf of the president. The document will radically change the relationship between the media and authorities. A story examines its new wording. (2)

U.S. Department of State official Richard Baucher said Tuesday that his agency has serious doubts that Iran is developing its nuclear program for peaceful purposes. A story comments on his statement. (2, Kommersant, 9)

Interior Minister Boris Gryzlov harshly criticized St. Petersburg's police Tuesday. In his opinion they are unable to ensure the security of the 45 heads of state and thousands of other guests who are expected to attend the city's 300th anniversary festivities. As a result, a special Interior Ministry force will arrive in the city to take control of the situation. (2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 3, Gazeta,2)

The Main Military Prosecutor's Office has instituted criminal proceedings in connection with the embezzlement of $3.7 million from the federal budget that belongs to the Defense Ministry. This money was earmarked for paying pensions to military pensioners living in Latvia. A story gives details. (3)

A story is devoted to Armenia, Russia's loyal strategic partner, which is to elect its president on Feb. 18. Robert Kocharyan has launched a campaign for his second and last term. (4)

Chechen entrepreneur Salambek Maigov has been appointed to represent the Chechen Republic and its rebel leader Aslan Maskhadov. A story profiles this person, focusing on Russian officials' response to his appointment. (3, Kommersant, 4)

The Economic Development Ministry on Tuesday made public a report on the results of the country's social and economic development from 2000 to 2002. The major conclusion drawn is rather pessimistic. The factors that for 3 years ensured record high gross domestic product and industrial production growth rates have exhausted themselves with no new factors in sight. A further conclusion is that the economy's dependence on the world's foreign economic situation has increased. A story examines the report's main provisions. (5)

Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov is today expected to report in the State Duma the reasons for failures in the housing and utility sphere. He will also recount the serious problems in the domestic energy sector. A story notes that at present the number of opponents to energy reform may grow. Deputies are expected to discuss energy reform in the second reading on Feb. 14. (5, Kommersant, 2, Noviye Izvestia, 2, Gazeta, 9, 10)

The International Financial Corporation (MFK), an affiliate of the World Bank, said that it intends to invest $6 million into the Russian holding ru-net. MFK also said that large Silicon Valley venture funds are also showing interest in Russia. (5)

A story offers new scandalous facts connected with the sale of the Severnaya Neft company, which received a license to develop the Val Gamburtseva oil deposit in the Nenets Autonomous Area. (5)s

The government released a decree Tuesday on imposing certificates for exporting uncut natural diamonds from Russia. Brief. (5, Kommersant, 14)

Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin held a session Tuesday to discuss forming a stabilization fund that the ministry is to this week submit to the government. Brief. (5, Vremya Novostei, 1)

Oscar nominees were announced in Los Angeles on Tuesday. A story gives their names. (8, Kommersant, 21, Vremya Novostei, 2, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 14)

The leadership of the French Alcatel company presently doing business on the Russian market decided to increase the number of service centers in many Russian regions. A story looks at the company's business and plans. (9)


The Federal Tax Police Service has proposed a new method of combating tax violators. Its director, Mikhail Fradkov, revealed its essence. (1,15)

President Vladimir Putin had many interesting meetings in Paris on Tuesday, including his meeting with Paris Mayor Bertran Delanoue. A story describes the meeting. (2)

Presidential elections will take place in Mordovia next Sunday. A story looks at several candidates, saying that Deputy Prime Minister Valentina Matviyenko on Tuesday arrived in Saransk to support the present head of the republic, Nikolai Merkushkin. (3)

The Civil Collegium of Tatarstan's Supreme Court on Wednesday will consider Deputy Prosecutor General Alexander Zvyagintsev's application on declaring several articles of the republic's constitution in violation of federal legislation. A story examines several such articles. (4)

The Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk City Court, due to the Prosecutor's Office demand, has released Alexei Igrunov and Alexei Kuznetsov from jail on the condition they not leave the city. Both were charged with killing Federal Border Service General Vitaly Gamov. A story comments on the case. (5, Gazeta, 7, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 10)

The Military Collegium of the Supreme Court considered an espionage case Tuesday at a closed session. Chief Military Prosecutor Alexander Savenkov tried to prove that the Moscow Regional Military Court's sentence for regular secret service agent Alexander Sypachov, accused of high treason, was too light. A story examines his case. (5, Gazeta, 7)

Russian Muslims together with all Muslims in the world celebrated the Kurban-Bairam holiday Tuesday,. A story describes the holiday and the way it was celebrated. (8, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 3)

Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov signed a decree Tuesday allowing towing services to move private vehicles from parking spaces if they are obstructing road work. A story comments on the document. (8 Noviye Izvestia, 1,2, Vremya MN, 2, Vremya Novostei, 1, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 5, MK, 1,2)

Chief Moscow Sanitary Physician Nikolai Filatov said at a news conference on Tuesday that a slight flu epidemic had hit Moscow. In view of this, large children's events will be forbidden. A story comments on his statement. (8)

The Economic Development Ministry submitted to the government a package of draft documents Tuesday on the investment of pension funds. The documents determine the rules for the pension fund investment market. A story examines some of the documents, saying that they have shocked many market participants. (13)

The Agros company (created by the Interros holding) on Tuesday made public information about the purchase of a controlling interest in the Tagansky meat-processing factory TAMP. According to Agros officials, the holding intends to invest more than $10 million in boosting the factory. (13)

Alan Greenspan, head of the U.S. Federal Reserve, presented a 6-month report to Congress on the state of the national economy. A story comments on major provisions of the report. (14)

The Moscow government discussed ways to increase revenues into the city's budget Tuesday. A story examines several effective proposals. (14)

The Soviet Vneshekonombank (VEB), Roseximbank and the Association of French Banks (AFB-export) signed an agreement Tuesday on cooperation in Third World market participation. A story reveals its essence, saying that the agreement is a result of VEB's struggle with French banks over a Vietnamese plant. (14)

The Moscow government intends to privatize 76 pharmacies in the city this year. A story describes how market participants regard this decision. (17)

The French oil and gas concern TotalFinaElf presented its project to the administration of the Krasnoyarsk region Tuesday. The company intends to extract oil in the Turukhansk District. Brief. (17)

The Presidium of the Supreme Arbitration Court on Tuesday cancelled the decision of the Moscow Arbitration Court of Sept. 30 1996, according to which the word "Stolichnaya" (name of the famous vodka brand) was stripped of independent legal protection. The brief looks at the new court decision. (17)

The Ford Motor automobile concern has raised the prices of its vehicles on the Russian market by an average of 3.5 percent. Brief. (17)

The St. Petersburg International Bank has bought the Interleasing-Avia company. This was announced by the bank's press service on Tuesday. Brief. (17)


Last year's experience has not discouraged the British-American British Petroleum company from showing interest in investments in Russia. The company announced Tuesday that it was creating an oil holding with Alfa-Group and Access/Renova, the assets of which are evaluated at $18 billion. As a result of this deal, TNK International owners will receive $6.75 billion in cash and in BP shares. (A1)

During St. Petersburg's upcoming 300th anniversary, the city's only airport, Pulkovo, may close for regular flights and service only official delegations. Foreign aviation companies assess the potential losses of this decision at $1.5 to $2.5 million. (A1)

Central Bank head Sergei Ignatyev said Tuesday that this year the ruble's real rate will rise by 4 to 6 percent. A story comments on his statement and looks at the major reason behind it: Ignatyev's promise to President Vladimir Putin to keep the inflation rate in the pre-election year within 12 percent. (A1)

The per capita subsistence minimum in the fourth quarter of 2002 was 1,893 rubles. A brief offers several other figures on this subsistence rate. (A1)

As many as 214,587 crimes were registered in Russia in January 2003, the main information center of the Interior Ministry said. Brief. (A1)

Three top managers of YevroKhim, part of MDM Group, were appointed deputy heads of the Komi Republic administration Tuesday. (A2)

Iran and Russia have revived the 1991 Soviet contract for the delivery of military combat equipment to Iran, a country the United States has labeled as part of the "axis of evil." The production of 300 BMP-2 machines, costing $60 million, will markedly improve the financial position of Kurganmashzavod. A2)

During a meeting with French businessmen on Tuesday President Vladimir Putin complained that the European Union's granting to Russia of market status last year has done no good. A story says why Putin raised this issue in France. (A2)

Government officials view dependence on raw materials as a major obstacle to economic growth. Hence, Task No. 1 is diversification of the economy. A story examines its essence. (A3)

In an interview, Natalya Rayevskaysa, who was chairwoman of Avtobank in in 2001 and is now a pensioner, explains how Avtobank, Ingosstrakh and NOSTA metal combine were sold in reality in that year. (A5)

Vedomosti. Companies and Markets

The Tagansky meat-processing enterprise TAMP has obtained a new owner, Agros, the third owner in the past month. The agricultural holding announced the purchase of a controlling stake in the meat combine from MDM Bank on Tuesday. (B1)

It will soon be a month since Senator Andrei Vavilov announced that he was selling the Severnaya Neft company, in which he is a major shareholder. The market is 100 percent sure that Rosneft is its buyer, but neither of these two companies have confirmed this version. Nevertheless, the supposed deal has already begun to trouble to the state-run company. A story gives details. (B1)

British Petroleum intends to invest $20 billion to develop five promising regions in Trinidad, Angola, Azerbaijan, the Mexican Bay and the Asian-Pacific region, BP head John Brown said Tuesday. Brief. (B1)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development will release a 7-year, $90 million credit to a joint venture between world metals company Arcelor and Russia's Severstal. Brief. (B1)

The investment program of the United Energy Systems's parent company this year will amount to 28.49 billion rubles. A brief looks at its components. (B1)

Transneft's board of directors on Tuesday endorsed a plan for the company's revenue and spendings, according to which the net profit of Transneft and its subsidiaries should amount to 19.98 billion rubles this year. Brief. (B1)

The shipbuilding firm Almaz is taking part in a tender for the right to deliver 7 fire-fighting vessels to Greece, costing $35 million. Brief. (B1

The Norwegian company Norsk Hydro ASA plans to expand its business in Russia by creating alliances with Russian companies. A brief looks at its plans. (B1)

Francois Rafen, head of the Russian section of the oil concern TotalFinaElf, said his company is willing to invest $3 billion to develop Vankor, a large oil and gas deposit in the Krasnoyarsk region. But the French-Belgian company is unable to start work due to problems with Russian minorities. (B2)

Nezavisimaya Gazeta

Domestic defense industry experts are warning authorities that the nuclear shield is in extremely poor condition, leaving the country vulnerable to a missle attacks. An article describes possible dangerous scenarios. (1, 2)

An article explains that about 95 percent of State Duma deputies -- including from factions such as Fatherland-All Russia, Unity, and Russian Regions -- will not be on their party lists for the new parliamentary elections. (1, 2)

An article addresses a letter signed by Democratic Party of Russia (DPR) Executive Committee Chairman Vyacheslav Zhidilyaev that has been sent out to all of the party's regional branches. The letter reveals a serious split in the party leadership The Executive Committee leadership has accused party leader and Novgorod Governor Mikhail Prusak of distancing himself from party activities.(2)

Iraq's decision to break its contract with LUKoil is a significant loss for Russia, though several other Russian oil companies remain in the country. Iraqi Oil Minister Samir al- Najim comments on the situation. (3)

In an interview, newly appointed Chechen Prime Minister Anatoly Popov says he is not afraid of potential differences with administration head Akhmad Kadyrov. (4)

A presentation was held in Anadyr by the Canadian Bima Gold Corporation early this week. The government of the Chukotka autonomous district last December signed an agreement to develop the Kupol gold deposit in the Bilibinsky District. According to this agreement, the Canadian company has bought a 75 percent share in the development of the mine for $45 million. An article examines other provisions of the agreement. (4)

Moscow and Minsk have failed to agree on a unified mint for the Russsian-Belarus Union. An article examines Tuesday's discussions at a meeting of the Belarussian government. (5)

Rossiiskaya Gazeta

The Moscow government Tuesday met to discuss the decision of City Hall's property department to raise rent drastically for nonresidential property, forcing scores of small firms out of business. An article summarizes the discussions. (1, 4)

NATO found itself in an unprecedented crisis after France, Belgium and Germany blocked a U.S. proposal to deliver military aid to Turkey during a possible war with Iraq. An article comments on the issue. (1, 7)

Peter Goldmark Jr. has quit his post as Chairman and CEO of the International Herald Tribune. His situation is similar to that of NTV journalist Leonid Parfyonov and the channel's staff writers. The Tribune's new owner has made radical personnel changes while ignoring proposals from the current staff. In an interview, journalist Vladimir Pozner and lawyer Gennady Alferenko comment on the situation. (1, 3)

Alexander Matkovsky, 44, an adviser in the Emergency Situations Ministry, was killed by a thief who has since been detained by police. An article describes what happened. (2)

A migration inspectorate is being created by the Interior Ministry in Moscow, the Moscow region and the Krasnodar region. In an interview, Federal Migration Service official Igor Yunash answers questions about the new inspectorate. (4)

British AMEC has announced the signing of a contract with the Sakhalin Energy Investment Company to complete one engineering project and build two oil platforms. An article examines the contract. (5)

Security Council Secretary Vladimir Rushailo last week visited Yekaterinburg to observe how local authorities protect constitutional rights. An article describes his visit and his disappointing findings. (6)

Document. The Federal Law on the 2003 Budget of the Social Insurance Fund. Commentary. Full text. (9, 10)

Krasnaya Zvezda

The Chechen administration and the government have endorsed a security plan for the holding of a constitutional referendum. Chechen rebel leaders, however, have drafted their own plan to disrupt the political process in the republic. An article analyses the latest developments in Chechnya. (1, 2)

Andrei Shmelyov of the Federation Council Social Policy Committee reflects on the difficult plight of military pensioners.(2)

An article examines major provisions of U.S. military reform being implemented by the Pentagon. (3)

Noviye Izvestia

Primorye pensioners are insulted by the 31-ruble increase in their pensions. In protest, many of them have refused to accept the extra money, deciding instead to send it to the following address: Moscow, The Kremlin, Putin. An article discusses their outrage. (1)

The State Duma today will endorse a list of its five candidates for the new Central Election Commission. An article examines the list. (1,2)

The Soviet-era statue "Worker and Peasant Woman" will undergo major renovation in mid-April. The project is discussed in a brief. (1)

The 8th Russian Honey Fair opens today in Moscow and will run through Feb. 24. A brief mentions its sponsors and participants. (1)

A majority of British citizens believe the United States poses a greater threat to the world than Iraq. An article discusses the results of a recent opinion poll conducted in Britain. (1)