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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Business in Brief

Antitrust Law Signed

President Dmitry Medvedev signed into law on Wednesday legislation that will provide criminal penalties for breaches in laws on competition.

The law will increase fines for most categories of anti-competitive behavior to 300,000 to 500,000 ($9,470 to $15,790) rubles and allows for prison sentences of up to three years. (MT)

Inflation Rate at 7.9%

The inflation rate in the year through July 27 was 7.9 percent compared with 9.3 percent a year earlier, the State Statistics Service said Wednesday.

Consumer prices advanced 0.1 percent from July 21 through July 27 after rising 0.1 percent the previous week, the service said. Prices rose 0.5 percent from the start of the month, the same as the year-ago period. (Bloomberg)

Ursa Reports Q1 Loss

Ursa Bank reported a loss in the first quarter after it set aside more money to cover bad loans, the lender said in a statement published Tuesday.

The net loss was 639 million rubles ($20.4 million) compared with a profit of 1.6 billion rubles in the first three months of 2008, the company said. (Bloomberg)

Belarus’ Proposal Ignored

MINSK — Belarus is proposing currency swaps with neighboring countries to help facilitate trade, but its potential partners have been slow to react, the head of the country’s central bank said Wednesday.

Belarus has already agreed to a three-year currency swap with China worth 20 billion yuan, or almost $3 billion.

Central Bank Chairman Pyotr Prokopovich said similar proposals put to Russia, Ukraine and an unidentified European country had generated only a limited response. (Reuters)

Polyus H1 Sales Down 13%

Polyus Gold’s first-half sales fell 13 percent on lower output, the company said Wednesday.

Sales declined to $440 million, from $506 million a year earlier, the company said. First-half gold output fell 14 percent to 477,000 ounces. (Bloomberg)

Harvest Below Last Year’s

Russia harvested 32 million tons of grain in the marketing year that began July 1 at yields below last year’s, the Agriculture Ministry said Wednesday.

Farmers had harvested 11.3 million hectares of land as of Wednesday, the ministry said. The average yield was 2.83 tons a hectare, 0.82 tons less than last year, it said. (Bloomberg)

For the Record

  • RusHydro held talks with RusAl on building an aluminum smelter at Boguchansk, the company’s chief executive, Vasily Zubakin, told reporters Wednesday. (Bloomberg)
  • TNK-BP said it completed the sale of its oil field services unit to Weatherford International after gaining approval from Russia’s anti-monopoly service, it said Wednesday in an e-mailed statement. (MT)
  • The International Monetary Fund will support the debt restructure of Naftogaz Ukrainy if it helps the company and country’s fiscal balance, an IMF official said Wednesday. (Reuters)