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Theatre phenomenon
Why it is more than
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Medvedev and The young say London sells
Putin in tandem no to Moscow our treasures
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One year on They’re turning to Russian art fair is
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Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Going hi-tech Innovation could be the path out of the present
News in brief
troubles, believes President Medvedev and Microsoft CEO
Financial market
looks good…
Government announces visa-free travel for
ship-bound foreigners
IT will show us
at least for now
In May, the Russian government published a decree that
will allow foreigners travelling to Russia by ferry to spend up
to three days in the country without applying for a visa. The
move is largely aimed to compensate for an expected drop
Russian blue chips seem to be and Opec’s possible decision in foreign tourism following the global economic slump, and
suggesting that the worst to cut export quotas could is most vital to the country’s northern capital, St Petersburg,
the way through
phase of the crisis is over. push oil futures up further, which receives a significant portion of its visitors via ship.
However, economic statistics but he emphasised that the However, the decree significantly limits the freedom of move-
show exactly the opposite oil market remains among ment for those affected: foreigners will only be allowed to
picture. What is behind this the most volatile and could travel with their tour groups according to a pre-scheduled
digression in economic data? easily go down. itenerary.
This question will be widely High oil prices also lead to The decree came into force on May 20, 2009.
discussed at the St an infl ux of foreign currency
Petersburg Economic Forum into Russia and, therefore, a
on June 4-6. strengthening of the rouble. Kremlin moves against negative rewriting of
Unfortunately, much of this
Russian history
infl owing capital cannot be
RUSSIA NOW invested because of prob- President Dmitry Medvedev has ordered the creation of a
lems in the banking sector. new commission tasked with countering attempts to rewrite
Foreign investors are return- Russians are also currently history to the detriment of Russia's interests.
ing to Russia, stocks are up buying stocks with poten- The presidential decree establishing the commission follows
and the RTS index has tially high dividends prior to a May 8 video address posted on Medvedev’s website in
passed the psychologically- the annual shareholders’ which the President complained that attempts to falsify his-
critical 1,000 mark (up from meetings, added Simagin. tory were becoming “increasingly harsh, depraved and ag-
January’s 498). At the same But dividends are not ex- gressive”.
time, Russia’s GDP is ex- pected to be high, and the in-
pected to drop by 6pc this terest from investors may
year, industrial production soon fade. Moscow wants Russia-Nato council to work
has already decreased by 9pc Hence the current upswing
and infl ation has been spi- is the result of a coming-to- Russia hopes artificial obstacles for the work of the Russia-
ralling. gether of several circum- Nato council will be removed soon, but further steps depend
Experts agree that a big stances (mostly the increas- on the other side, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
driver of Russian blue chips ing price of oil), and not of “I would like to hope that obstacles in the way of resuming
is the oil price, which grew any fundamental changes to the work of the Russia-Nato council – and they are totally
85pc from a minimum of the structure of the Russian artificial – will be removed soon, and this important structure
$32.4 per barrel in Decem- economy. The global eco- will resume its activity on the basis of principles agreed dur-
ber 2008 to more than $60 nomic situation, which will ing its establishment,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman
recently. Maksim Simagin, depend on the policies of the Andrei Nesterenko said.
an analyst at Alfa Bank, told world’s leading central
RIA Novosti that the upcom- banks, will determine Rus-
ing beginning of the ‘trans- sia’s growth over the next Defence orders total $35bn
GRIGORY SYSOEV_ITAR-TASS portation season’ in the US several years.
Russian arms export monopoly Rosoboronexport said earlier
Major financial investment is promised for Russia’s fledgling technology industry this month its defence order portfolio was worth $27bn. “Our
overall portfolio of orders with Rosobornexport has hit $35bn
as of today,” said Alexander Fomin, first deputy director of
There are not many hi-tech In 2007, it seemed clear Rus- bluntly: “Encouraging inno- profitable – unlike many the Federal Service for Military Cooperation, which regulates
start-ups in Russia, but some sia was not the shining star in vation is something we talk a fi rms operating in the metal-
Russia’s foreign military cooperation.
entrepreneurs have proved it emerging markets when it lot about but, frankly speak- lurgical and raw materials
is possible to develop an came to the hi-tech industry. ing, no breakthrough has sectors – and, taking note of
innovation-based business. Neglected scientists, lack of taken place… almost nothing this, venture capitalists and
officials must
Plans to develop ‘champions’ of research
The 1998 economic crisis state support, bloated state has been done in the hi-tech software giants began to in-
catalysed the expansion of companies, corruption and and nanotechnology indus- vest in the industry. The idea of funding several National Research Institutions
Russia’s information red tape stymied profitable tries, while the money allo- Microsoft’s announcement
declare incomes
with federal money on the basis of leading Russian universi-
technologies. Microsoft CEO innovation. Analysts and cated is not being used.” that it is to invest $300m in ties has been around for years, but the Russian government
Steve Ballmer believes it could journalists agreed that Rus- But one of the few positive the country’s fl edgling tech recently announced that this summer 10 to 15 such organi-
happen again. sia had missed its nanosec- surprises of the economic cri- infrastructure underscores Russian President Dmitry Vneshkombank, the Deposit sations would be identified and become eligible for up to 6bn
ond when it came to hi-tech. sis came from this neglected that potential. Medvedev has made another Insurance Agency, and the roubles (about $200m) of additional funding over the next
President Dmitry Medvedev industry: the few existing hi- advance in the fight against Housing and Communal five years. The programme mirrors similar initiatives in Japan,
RUSSIA NOW explained the lack of results tech companies remained CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 corruption, signing five Services Fund will be re- Germany and China.
decrees that will establish a quired to report incomes.
system by which government The President also deter-
officials and heads of state mined the exact information
Hiddink’s help needed for World Cup bid
corporations will be required officials must provide. This
Arms Russia and the US must make serious concessions
to report their incomes and includes total annual income Russia is counting on national team coach Guus Hiddink
assets every year. (from one’s principal work to help in its bid for the 2018 World Cup. Earlier this month,
How many warheads will
and other sources) and prop- Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered Russia’s sports
erty (its size, country, means minister to prepare the country’s proposal for the right to
VREMYA NOVOSTEI of transport). All this will be host the 2018 World Cup. “We hope that Guus Hiddink will
‘reach’ the July summit?
made public on state-run become an ambassador for our bid to hold the 2018 World
Medvedev has compelled websites. Cup in Russia,” Russian Football Union (RFU) general di-
government officials to fol- Officials will provide more rector Alexei Sorokin said. Hiddink led the team to the semi-
low his example. This spring, detailed declarations to the finals of Euro 2008.
in an unprecedented move, Tax Service, including bank
Judging by initial consultations piring on December 5, will be he made public his assets and accounts and exact address- Based on RIA Novosti materia
between US and Russian reached, or the two nations income for 2008. Next to do es of property. This informa-
experts on a new Strategic will fi nd themselves with no so was Prime Minister tion will not go public.
Arms Reduction Treaty in legal basis for controlling Vladimir Putin, followed by According to Sergei Nary-
Moscow on May 19-20, both warhead numbers. the entire leadership, includ- shkin, head of the presidential
sides are eager to come to It is also relatively clear what ing all cabinet members, sen- administration, “random
Youth Nationwide curfew for
terms but not quite ready. But target levels will be set. ior officials in the presiden- checks will be conducted but
that is no reason to worry: this Whereas Start-1 defi nes quo- tial administration and leg- will not determine the corre-
teenagers PAGE 6
has happened more than once tas of 6,000 warheads and islative heads. lation between income and
in the past, especially at the 1,600 delivery vehicles, both Now the list of people whose declared assets”. That is the re-
beginning of such talks. countries are now ready to re- incomes must be made pub- sponsibility of law-enforce-
duce this to 1,500 apiece. lic has expanded to include ment organs. Anyone in line
According the US Assistant all members of the govern- for a government post who
RIA NOVOSTI Secretary of State for Verifi - ment, deputies, senators, does not provide a declaration
cation and Compliance Rose Central Election Commis- or provides false information
America and Russia ex- Gottemoeller, the talks cover sion and Audit Chamber of- will automatically forfeit that
changed proposals for reduc- VLADIMIR RODIONOV_RIA NOVOSTI intercontinental and subma- ficials as well as governors. post. If sitting officials violate
tion of nuclear warheads and Medvedev and Obama: two wise men to discuss nuclear future rine-based ballistic missiles Governors have until Sep- declaration requirements,
their delivery vehicles. They and air-based warheads. The tember 1 to decide which mu- disciplinary action (anything
also discussed complex cal- US has agreed to count de- nicipal employees should be from a fi ne to a fi ring) will be
culations on the balance of proaches”, the teams will pre- provide a framework for ployed warheads only, ex- added to the list. taken by the head of the rele-
Russian and US nuclear pare reports for presidents presidential decision-mak- cluding those in storage, but In addition to their own em- vant body.
charges. Based on what Rus- Medvedev and Obama in the ing on stockpile reductions. compromise is possible. ployees, top managers of
sian Foreign Minister Sergey run-up to their Moscow sum- It is already clear a deal re- state corporations Ros- HOW MUCH DO RUSSIAN MPS
Lavrov called “positional ap- mit on July 6-8. These will placing the Start-1 treaty, ex- SEE AN EXPERT VIEW ON PAGE 4 tekhnologii, Rosnanotekh,
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