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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016


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Keeping Russia Warm

A small Moscow region town has been ""putting flowers on Russia's shoulders"" since 1868.

Bloody Bars

Besides occasional sugar cubes, satisfying your sweet tooth was not always easy in the Soviet Union. However, generations of children fondly remember the existence of various sugary over-the-counter medicines that made life more exciting. Examples of these are rolls of giant Vitamin C tablets and rosehip cough syrup that was made into ""cola"" by diluting it with mineral water. The strangest of them all was surely gematogen, a type of candy bar with high iron content, achieved by spiking it with processed cow blood.

Snacks While You Shop

Z-Cafe -- no it's not Zorro's favorite watering hole, but a rather pleasant spot to go for drinks on the corner of Novy Arbat and the Garden Ring. Situated inside the posh new Lotte Plaza retail center, it's surrounded by swank boutiques. Yet unlike the usual mall cafe, it manages some sense of individuality, thanks largely to the fact that besides opening onto the shop floor, it has its own separate entrance from the street.

Compromise Needed Over British Council

The standoff between Moscow and London over the activities of the British Council is regrettable. It is regrettable not only because tens of thousands of Russians could lose the opportunity to acquire new skills, including a better knowledge of English and best practices in Britain, which the council either teaches or facilitates.

EU's Russia Question

Friend or foe, or something uneasily in-between? That's the question Europe is asking about Russia, and Russia about a newly aggressive Europe. President Vladimir Putin's choice of Dmitry Medvedev, chairman of Gazprom, the gas company with an emerging stranglehold on European energy supplies, only throws this question into an even starker light.

Medvedev's Status-Quo Liberalism

Many observers have concluded that First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, who in all probability will become the next president in March, is a liberal. But it is a mystery to me why so many people sign on to this interpretation. It may be because Medvedev has a smooth, soft-spoken and intelligent way of speaking. In addition, he is not known for making hard-line speeches and has never engaged in diatribes against the West -- that is, not yet.

Business in Brief

Exxon in Sakhalin Gas TalksRosneft Not Planning SaleRosneft, Renova Make BidsLUKoil Signs Auto DealTatneft's Oil Output UpEvraz's Q4 Output Up 21%Pipe Sales Rise 10%UralChem Signs DealNew Car Sales to Rise 13%,VimpelCom's LoanComstar Broadband SoarsGallery Plans to Delay IPOLSR Group to Appoint CEOSU-155 Group, Lone Bidder

Yukos Boosts Profit at Rosneft by 80%

Rosneft's profits jumped by 80 percent following its purchase of assets of the bankrupt Yukos oil firm, the state-owned company said Wednesday in its first statement concerning the effect of the acquisitions.

X5 Will Snap Up Karusel Chain

X5 Retail Group, the country's largest food retailer, said Wednesday that it would exercise its option to purchase Karusel, a grocery retail chain with outlets in the country's northwest.

Ex-Yukos Executive Tells of Blackmail

A gravely ill former Yukos executive has accused his jailers of trying to blackmail him into testifying against old associates by denying him the medical treatment he needs to stay alive.

Finnish Courts May Delay Baltic Gas Link

Environmental concerns in Finland over the Nord Stream consortium's plans to build a gas pipeline under the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany could cause months or even years of delay to the project, officials said.

Oil Growth Seen Slowing to 1.8%

Russian oil output growth will fall this year below 2 percent for the first time since 1999, because of a lack of greenfield developments, stagnation at mature Siberian fields and rising capital costs, a survey showed.

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