EBRD funds modern heating systems in one of Russia’s coldest areas
Deal could help private energy-service providers to work in Yakutia’s municipal sector
The EBRD will provide up to 3 billion roubles (€75 million) to modernise and increase the energy efficiency of district heating systems in a permafrost area of Far East Russia where the heating season lasts 10 months a year and winter temperatures drop to -50 degrees centigrade for extended periods.
EBRD lends to growing furniture cluster on Belarus-Russia border
The EBRD is lending €5 million to finance the building of a furniture plant in a fast-growing cluster on Belarus’s border with Russia. The plant will use raw material supplied by the cluster’s first project, a Lithuanian-owned wood processing plant, to which the Bank provided an initial loan seven months ago.
VTB Capital introduces new pay structure in line with new international standards
The Wall Street Journal Europe last week reported that VTB Capital will become the first financial institution from Russia to introduce a pay structure that complies with new international standards designed to reduce bankers' focus on short-term profits and eliminate excessive risk taking.
Russian Banks expanding international presence
Putin's social policy article: complete translation
Building justice: A social policy for Russia
By Vladimir Putin
Translation provided by the Prime Minister's web site
Russia is a social welfare state. We have a much higher level of social guarantees than countries with a comparable level of labour productivity and per capita incomes. In the past few years, spending on the social sphere has accounted for over 50% of overall budgetary spending. In the past four years alone, it has gone up by 50% in absolute terms. Its percentage share of GDP has increased from 21% to 27%. The 2008-2009 downturn failed to undermine any of these social guarantees. Moreover, during this period the wages of public sector employees actually went up, as did pensions and other social payments. But Russian citizens are by no means satisfied with the current situation, and their dissatisfaction is perfectly justified.
Leave privatization deals of the 1990's alone , says Russia's Kudrin
Russian former finance minister Alexei Kudrin on Monday spoke against the idea put forward by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to charge a one-off fee to the owners of large state enterprises privatized in the early 1990s.
Putin, who is running for president and is expected to return the Kremlin after the March 2012 elections, suggested at the congress of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs last week that Russia should charge a fee to oligarchs who acquired lucrative state assets in the so-called loans-for-shares deals virtually for a song.
Putin aims to increase Russia's population to 154 million
Russian Prime Minister and presidential frontrunner Vladimir Putin in a new article proposed a set of measures aimed to increase country’s population from 142 million to 154 million people. The summary of Putin’s article called Building Fairness. Social Politics for Russia has been published on the Website of Komsomolskaya Pravda daily on Sunday. The full text will be released on Monday.
Russian researchers drill down to prehistoric Antarctic lake
Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Yury Trutnev. Presenting a flask of water drawn from prehistoric lake under Russia’s Vostok research station in the Antarctic to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, Mr. Trutnov said experts believe it may be from a million to 30 million years old.
Unpacking Russia's stabilizing role in the Asian Pacific
In an interview published in the Izvestia newspaper on January 27, 2012, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov directly addressed a perceived Chinese-American struggle for influence in the Asia Pacific region and how Russia plans to maintain its influence. The premise of the statement is based on a recent shift in policy by the U.S., part of which is inspired by a potential shift in power in the region as a result of China’s military buildup. According to Lavrov, Russia already is a stabilizing factor in the region and hopes to strengthen its role as such in the future. For the full report by Shawnna Robert, go to DiploNews here:http://diplonews.com/intro/20120210_L_RussiaRoleAPR.php
LOW INFLATION, SUSTAINABLE GROWTH IN RUSSIA
December statistics provide grounds for optimism in 2012. Economic development accelerated in December in y-o-y terms. Retail sales expanded 9.5% (the best result since October 2008), bringing the 2011 figure to 7.2%. Investment grew 8.9% in December and 6.2% in 2011. Economic growth for last year was reported at 4.3%. This year, it will be no less than 4.0%.