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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

12/17/2004

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Press Review

A brief look at the stories making headlines in the Russian-language press

A Whole Lotta Nothing

?????? is one of those little words that foreigners learn right away, if only because we hear it so often from our Russian friends and colleagues.

Baiting the Bear

Even a cursory look at history shows that the breakup of major empires has not usually been a peaceful, beneficent process. The Soviet Union is perhaps the single great exception to this rule -- an empire which declared itself defunct and voluntarily disbanded -- neither compelled by the external pressure of crushing military defeat nor devastated by internal revolution.

Sharapova Emerges as Tycoon

Maria Sharapova loves to shop, gossip with girlfriends, write and pore over photos in glossy fashion magazines. But that's where similarities with other 17-year-olds end.

Business in Brief

MNB Changes Focus MOSCOW (Prime-Tass) -- Moscow Narodny Bank plans to switch from wholesale banking to investment banking in the medium term, Igor Suvorov, chairman of MNB's executive board, said in an interview. This year the London-based subsidiary of the Central Bank has worked hard to expand its activities and increase profitability, Suvorov said. At first the bank will focus on bond offerings for Russian companies, Suvorov said. ""In the future, we plan to enter the stock market as well. We have already begun creating our research division."" Rail Fees Hiked 12.5% MOSCOW (Bloomberg) -- The government approved a 12.5 percent price increase for rail shipments to ports starting next year, as producers increase cargo volumes and commodity prices rise. The Federal Tariffs Service approved the increase Thursday at its management meeting, the service said in a statement. Russian Railways, or RZD, had asked the government on Dec. 3 to consider the increase.

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