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Press Review

IZVESTIA (20/7/2005)

Governors of the regions that by 90 percent depend on federal budget subsidies may soon lose their political independence-- such a decision was made by the gvt commission on coordination of work of the federal executive bodies in the Southern Federal District that on Monday held a session presided over by presidential representative Dmitry Kozak. National republics in the North Caucasus may be the first to suffer from this new system. The story reveals its essence. (1, 2, 5, Vremya Novostei, 1, 2, Gazeta, 1, 3)

The Moscow gvt on Tuesday at a session presided over by Mayor Yury Luzhkov decided that only two city structures-- the housing-utility complex and the city GAI--will be allowed to remove illegally parked autos on city roads. The story comments on the decision. (1, 3)

A new terrorist act in the north of Chechnya on Tuesday left 14 people dead (11 of them local police) and another 33 seriously injured. The story gives details. (1, 4, Kommersant, 1, 3, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 2, Vremya Novostei, 1, Gazeta, 1, 9, Noviye Izvestia, 6, Trud, 1, 2, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 4, MK, 1)

The scandal around Vladimir Tikhonov, the governor of the Ivanovo region, took an unexpected twist on Tuesday. As it has turned out, it was local entrepreneur Telman Feroyan, who gave a bribe to detained Acting Director of Ivavtodor Valery Tsoi. Feroyan stated that he gave bribes not only to Tsoi but also to governor Vladimir Tikhonov. The latter and local siloviki, however, stated that there was no criminal case against Tikhonov, who in the Prosecutor' s Office acted as a witness in the Tsoi case. (1, 2, Vremya Novostei, 3, Trud, 2)

Yekaterina Lakhova, head of the State Duma Committee on the Affairs of Women, Family and Children, believes it necessary to impose a moratorium on the adoption of Russian children in those countries where they suffer from family violence. Lakhova proposed this at a news conference in Moscow on Tuesday. The story comments on the proposal, saying that the USA may be the first to suffer from it. (2)

The Constitutional Court has accepted at last a complaint from the Union of Right Forces (SPS) party against President Putin, who imposed a new system of electing the regional governors. The story examines the complaint. (2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 3)

President Putin on Tuesday presided over a gvt session, at which ministers reported to the president about pleasant things alone. The story focuses on reports by Economic Development Minister German Gref and by Health Minister Mikhail Zurabov. (3, Kommersant, 2, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 9, Gazeta, 4)

Sergei Naryshkin, head of the gvt administration, on Tuesday was put in charge of the administrative reform. Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov was released from this post, because he is very busy. The story comments on the appointment. (3, Kommersant, 1, 2, Noviye Izvestia, 2, Vremya Novostei, 1, 2, Gazeta, 4)

The story describes July 19 in Ukraine as the first day without GAI that, according to President Viktor Yushchenko' s decree, will be reformed. Internet poll shows that most Russians would support the liquidation of GAI in their country. (3, Noviye Izvestia, 1, 4, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 3)

Federal authorities will do everything in their power to create conditions for boosting and successful activities of business in the regions, President Putin said at his meeting on Tuesday with RSPP head Arkady Volsky. Brief. (3)

Belarussian law-enforcers have refused to extend a visa to American Terry Bosh (Sp. ?) ,who taught at Belarussian State University. The story says why. (4, Kommersant, 11)

Unidentified assailants in the Moscow region on Monday killed Moscow lawyer 49-year-old Yelena Yatsyk. The story gives details. (6)

Reputed mobster Vyacheslav Ivankov (Yaponchik) today is expected to come to the Moscow City Court to hear s a verdict of ' not guilty' that will be delivered on the basis of the jury' s decision. The Moscow City Prosecutor' s Office, however, did not agree with it, and Acting City Prosecutor Vladimir Bakun stated on Tuesday that many jurors had the criminal past. (6, Kommersant, 3, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 2, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 10, Vremya Novostei, 3, Trud, 1, 2, Komsomolskaya Pravda, 2, MK, 1, 2)

The Swiss Supreme Court on Tuesday recognized the arrest of Russian former Nuclear Power Minister Yevgeny Adamov legal. At the same time, the Court wants to have more evidence to see whether the American inquiry on his extradition was politically motivated. The story comments on the Court' s decision. (6, Kommersant, 3, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 1, 11, Noviye Izvestia, 6, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 10, Trud, 4, Gazeta, 2, MK, 1, 2 )

An unidentified murderer in Krasnoyarsk on Tuesday killed Dmitry Zakharov, a top official from the State Narcotics Control Service. Brief. (6 )

The Economic Development Ministry has submitted to the gvt a privatization plan for 2006. One in every 8 state-run enterprises will be put on sale. The gvt hopes to earn 31 billion rubles. The story examines the plan. (7, Kommersant, 7, Rossiiskaya Gazeta, 5, Vremya Novostei, 7, Gazeta, 15, Noviye Izvestia, 3)

ABN Amro and Barclays have organized for the state-owned Rosneft company a credit agreement on borrowing $2 billion that will be given by ten banks. The brief says where this money will go. (8)

Initial Public Offering, one of the largest ones in the history of the domestic market, will take place today when the NOVATEK oil and gas company will offer to investors, mostly the Western ones, about 30 percent of its shares. Brief. (8)

The Moscow Arbitration Court has increased the sum of Yuganskneftegaz' suit against Yukos by 63 billion rubles-- up to 226 billion rubles and postponed the hearing of the case to Aug. 23. Brief. (8, Vremya Novostei, 7)

In an interview First Deputy Moscow Mayor Lyudmika Shvetsova comments on several provisions of the new Housing and Town-Building codes that took effect recently. (9)

KOMMERSANT 20/7/2005)

Ukraine' s President Viktor Yushchenko on Tuesday received Alexander Abramov, President and main shareholder of Evrazholding, and discussed with him the situation around the Nikopol ferroalloys plant. The story describes this situation, saying how Yushchenko responded. (1, 5)

The Prosecutor General' s Office on Tuesday launched the questioning on the Sosnovkas case, involving former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov. The story describes the questioning of former Deputy Property Minister Nikolai Gusev. (1, 3, )

Former Saratov governor Dmitry Ayatskov, who recently was appointed Ambassador to Belarus, harshly criticized new governor Pavel Ipatov at a news conference on Tuesday. Ayatskov said that Ipatov would be soon replaced with State Duma Vice-Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin, Secretary of the United Russia General Council. The story comments on the criticism. (2)

Yukos Vice-President Yury Beilin on Tuesday failed to arrive at the Prosecutor General' s Office, where he had to be indicted on the case concerning extra-norm oil extraction by Yuganskneftegaz. According to Kommersant' s information, Beilin is in London now. (3)

Beslan School Principal Lidia Tsaliyeva was questioned on Tuesday in the North Ossetian Supreme Court that is continuing to consider the criminal case of terrorist Nurpashi Kulayev. The story examines the principal' s testimony. (4, Gazeta, 9)

The Moscow gvt on Tuesday discussed a draft decree concerning the location of garages- parking lots in the city for temporary storage of autos. The story examines the document' s main provisions. (4, Vremya Novostei, 3, Gazeta, 5)

The LUKoil-Russneft conflict over control over the Geoilbent oil extracting company has been peacefully settled. The story reveals the essence of the conflict, focusing on its outcome. (5)

International Airport Sheremetyevo may give up its plans to take part in the capital of Terminal, the subsidiary of Aeroflot that was created for the construction of the third terminal of the airport. The story explains the reason. (5, 7)

Regional Development Minister Vladimir Yakovlev is displeased at how regions are preparing for winter. He named several regions that plan to do it later. The brief says why this serious problem should not be postponed. (5)

Vladimir Kogan, head of the Banking House " Sankt-Peterburg" plans a wide-scale reorganization of his business. The story reveals his plan. (6)

The dollar rate on the international currency market on Tuesday grew by 0. 5-0. 8 percent in relation to the world main currencies. The story gives figures to illustrate the point. (6)

The Moscow Inter-Bank Currency Exchange for the first time in its history on Tuesday suspended trading in privileged shares of Sberbank. The story says why. (6)

Ukraine' s President Viktor Yushchenko has signed a decree on imposing a visa-free regime for Japanese travelers starting Aug. 1 Brief. (9)

Official Kiev on Tuesday proposed to send Ukrainian peacekeepers to Trans-Dniestria. Moscow has disagreed. The story comments on the issue. (10)

The 10th Moscow International Forum of Artistic Initiatives has opened in Novy Manege, in which 48 artists are taking part. The story describes the event. (13)

VEDOMOSTI (20/7/2005)

The biggest corporate credit in Russia that Rosneftegaz is trying to borrow to pay for 10. 7 percent of shares of Gazprom may turn out to be uniquely cheap. Six foreign banks are willing to lend it $7. 3 billion under the LIBOR +1. 55 percent rate. (A1)

Foreign shareholders of Chernogorneft, a subsidiary of TNK-BP, have sent a letter to Prosecutor General Vladimir Ustinov, asking him to audit the Russian-British company that, in their opinion, is not honest. (A1)

Tax authorities themselves decided to use the services of tax consultants assisting companies to successfully rebuff tax claims. A competition for selecting such" voluntary assistants" of the Federal Tax Service has already begun. The story reports on how consultants regard it. ((A1 )

Commentary is made regarding the idea of inviting independent specialists to give consultations to state officials on disputed and delicate issues. (A1, A4)

Goldman Sachs analysts note that Germany, France and Italy are ever more markedly among the EU member-states getting behind in their economic development. The story gives figures to illustrate the point. (A3)

Neither positive budget and trade indices, nor the reduction of its foreign debt can persuade Standard & Poor' s analysts that Russia deserves a higher credit rating. They believe that all economic successes are nothing against the background of the growing political risk and slowing down reforms. (A3)

The USA will deliver nuclear technologies to India. Rosatom is sure that Russian companies will be able on a par to compete with Americans. (A3)

Oleg Vyugin, head of the Federal Service for Financial Markets, reveals the essence of the current wide-scale discussion whether the Stabilization Fund should be used for boosting economic growth and doubling the gross domestic product. (A4)

In a far-ranging interview millionaire Mikhail Balakin, 43, head and co-owner of Group SU-155, talks about the origin of his business group, about the number of companies in it, about his personal share in the business, about SU-155' s production plan for this year, and about construction projects his company is participating. (A5)EDOMOSTI. COMPANIES & MARKETS SUPPLEMENTTo buy coal business or to regularly pay high dividends-- such are the reasons why the majority of investment banks view Mechel and Severstal as the most attractive companies. (B1)

The Baltika brewery on Tuesday launched an advertising campaign in China. The company assures that beer export on the highly competitive Chinese market is held not only for the sake of boosting the image of Baltika but also for business reasons. (B1)

LUKoil Board of Directors on Tuesday elected a new Management Board --13 members now instead of the previous 15. This is stated in the company' s press release. Brief. (B1)

The shares of French Group Danone on Tuesday went up in price by 14 percent due to rumours that it can be bought by PepsiCo. Investors earned much money, but analysts doubt that the deal will take place. (B1 )

The Federal Tariff Service has canceled a long-term tariff on transporting oil along the Transneft pipelines for the Total company. Brief. (B1)

Presidential aide Igor Shuvalov has been elected head of the Board of Directors of Sovcomflot. This is stated in the company' s press release. Brief. (B1)

Three Russian companies (their names are given) are claiming the Turkish Erdemir metals combine-- which of them has more chances? The Turkish authorities announced a tender for the sale of 49. 9 percent of shares of Erdemir in May. (B2)

AvtoVAZ is working even on days-off to meet a growing demand.ith this aim in view, its leadership has even imposed additional work shifts in July. (B2)

Rusal that has employed the former finance minister and the former deputy transportation minister has enticed another top official, and Yevgeny Solovyov, former Deputy Interior Minister, will be responsible for his safety. (B2)

According to ALROSA' s operational report for 2004, the company increased its proceeds by 30 percent and doubled its net profit. Investors now are waiting for its shares to appear in open sale. (B2)

Citigroup founder Sanford Waill (Sp?) decided to quit the company and to found his own fund of direct investments. The corporation' s Board of Directors, however, is blocking his resignation. (B3)


The story describes the practical stage of the strategic military exercises " Vostok-2005" that is being conducted on the training grounds of the Far East under direct command by General Staff head General Yury Baluyevsky. (1, 4)

The state administration is continuing to clone public organizations, thus creating illusion of the presence of the civic society in the country. Thus, a new human rights organization " Soprotivleniye" (" Resistance" ) will emerge in September. Its organizers have presented it as the state-controlled one that will be funded, like the pro-Kremlin Nashi movement, by the big domestic business. The story describes this organization and members of its Organizing Committee. (1, 3)

Mass media of late have been discussing the situation with domestic petrol prices, which has been caused by the recent gvt decision to raise, starting Aug. 1, the oil export duty up to a record high level -- $140 per ton. The story examines a logical conclusion, saying that the petrol prices by this fall will considerably increase. (3)

Igor Dobayev, head of the Geopolitical Sector of the Southern Research Center of the Academy of Sciences, has made public his report featuring an explosive situation in Dagestan. The story comments on the report. Six experts and spin doctors share their views on the efficacy of measures taken by federal authorities to settle the situation in the North Caucasus. (4)

Patriarch Alexy II is expected to arrive in Kazan today on a 2-day visit. The story examines the aim and program of his visit. (4)


The season of entrance examinations at institutes and universities is in full swing. now, and applicants coming to big cities to take these exams have a serious problem to find a place to live in during this period, since almost all student hostels today have been turned into shelters for market traders and immigrants- worker. The story offers concrete facts to illustrate the point, describing the situation in Yekaterinburg (Sverdlovsk region) . (1, 6)

In an interview highly-regarded historian Yury Afanasyev, the founder and President of the State Humanities University, and one of the leaders of the democratic movement of perestroika times, shares his view on the political and economic situation in the country, focusing on former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov' s political prospects. (1, 2)

The Moscow gvt plans to submit to the City Duma amendments to the housing legislation that envisage considerably increased fines for an illegal re-designing of apartments. The story examines several major amendments. (1, 3)

State Duma Security Committee head Vladimir Vasilyev stated on Tuesday that he did not exclude the launching of a criminal case on former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov, who, in his opinion, may be accused of fraud in obtaining a government-owned dacha at a lowered price. The story comments on this viewpoint. (2)

Yevgeny Yegorov, head of the Moscow City Small Business Department, at a city gvt session on Tuesday reported that 34 percent of working Muscovites are employed in small businesses today. The story comments on his statement, focusing on conditions in the city for boosting small businesses. (3)

Alyans has signed a license agreement with the Italian TECHNIP KTI SpA company on the construction of a facility to make sulphur in the Khabarovsk oil refinery. The brief looks at the project. (3)

St. Petersburg owners of 40 river pleasure boats on the Neva-River on Tuesday staged a protest against considerably increased rent payments for using city moorings. The story describes the protest, focusing on its participants' demands. (3)

The gvt last Thursday endorsed the Federal Space Program for 2006-2015. Its aim is to win back Russia' s former position of the world leading space power. The story examines the program' s main provisions. (7)

In an interview Alexei Surin, Dean of the State Management Department of Moscow State University, examines serious problems in training highly-qualified top managers today. The focus is on factors hampering the process. (7 )


Deputy Prosecutor General Sergei Fridinsky reported on Tuesday that 1, 080 children in Russia were killed by their parents between 2000 and 2005. The story comments on this terrible information. (2)

GAI has been abolished in Ukraine. Can the State Road Inspectorate be abolished in Russia? Ten politicians, State Duma deputies and public figures share their viewpoints. (3)

Russian Railways (RZH) newly-appointed head Vladimir Yakunin dislikes the present state of affairs in his company. The story examines what he concretely opposes, focusing on his aim to make his company the best in the country. (7)

More than 100 armed people almost in the center of Moscow have been holding for the second week already the building of the Gipromez company. The story describes the situation. (7)

Moscow City Court former judge Olga Kudeshkina, who has been fired for her criticism of Court Chairwoman Olga Yegorova, comments on the ruling of the Supreme Court that has not changed the verdict for Yukos employee Alexei Pichugin. (7)

The feature story describes what musical instruments Kremlin and gvt top officials play. (8, 9)


The Moon on July 22 will appear by one third as large. The story explains this natural phenomenon. (1)

Brezhnev' s 72-year-old son Yury Brezhnev on July 18 was hospitalized to the Central Clinical Hospital for his serious head problems. (1)

In a far-ranging interview Stanislav Khramenkov, head of the Mosvodokanal company, talks about the quality of Moscow water, saying what factors make its life dangerous. (5)