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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Red Tape Trips IKEA in Urals

IKEA, the world's biggest home furnishings retailer, may have to delay construction of a $130 million shopping center in Yekaterinburg, the country's fifth-largest city, after the government demanded changes to the plan.

"We were presented last week with a decree from the Natural Resources Ministry dated Dec. 23, 2003," demanding that the company submit new documents regarding the project's earliest stages of development, said Irina Vanenkova, a spokeswoman for the company.

Prosecutors on Monday demanded that IKEA stop work on the project because the company had not submitted documents necessary to get environmental approval, Prime-Tass reported, citing Kirill Yershov, the Sverdlovsk region's environmental prosecutor. "IKEA has not received any official notification of the prosecutor's request," Vanenkova said.

Contractors have started to clear land for the Yekaterinburg IKEA complex, but work cannot proceed without approval of the proper documents, Vanenkova said. The complex will contain an IKEA furniture store as well as space for rental to other retailers.

The Prosecutor General's Office in Moscow said that it could not immediately comment on the demands.