Russian News: August 22nd, 2008!

RBC, 22.08.2008, Novoogaryovo 15:50:03.Real disposable incomes of Russians are expected to rise 2-2.5 times by 2020, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said during a meeting on Russia’s long-term development. He pointed out that the respective goal was defined in the project of Russia’s strategies of social and economic development until 2020.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 15:40:45.Severstal is looking to acquire US coal mining company PBS Coals Corporation, the Russian steel maker said in a press release today. Severstal intends to offer $7.99 per each PBS Coals share, and the value of the deal has been estimated at $1.3bn. The US company will reportedly be bought through the purchase of Penfold Capital Acquisition Corporation, now merging with PBS Coals. The deal, which has yet to be approved by the regulating authorities, will be paid for in cash. If the deal fails, PBS Coals will, in certain circumstances, have to pay a penalty fee of $40.1m to Severstal. Both PBS Coals and Penfold Capital Acquisition have agreed to strike the deal, which is to be completed in mid-October.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 14:59:28.Russia’s armed forces will react accordingly in the event of possible terrorist attacks on the country’s Black Sea Fleet, deputy chief of the Russian military’s General Staff Anatoly Nogovitsyn told a press conference in Moscow today. He noted that all related matters, including the possibility of such attacks, were stipulated by the existing Russian-Ukrainian treaties. The recent announcements regarding attacks being prepared are aimed at undermining relations between Russia and Ukraine, which is quite regretful, Nogovitsyn stressed.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 14:40:12.Russian troops are being withdrawn from the Georgian-Ossetian conflict zone on schedule, Anatoly Nogovitsyn, deputy head of the Russian armed forces General Staff, told a press conference today. Russia does not intend to revise this schedule, the official stressed. He added that air forces were being relocated and troops were moving back to Russia. For instance, 25 strike fighters and 3 fighter planes have already returned to their permanent base, Nogovitsyn said.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 13:59:06.Investors are expecting a further rise on the Russian stock market, experts told RBC TV today. While Russian stocks opened higher today thanks to an increase in oil prices, trading activity slowed considerably half an hour into the session. Analysts point out that Russian shares are likely to remain highly volatile. Given that oil prices may correct downwards, this could affect the Russian market, experts fear. The RTS index is projected to ease gradually to 1,700 points, or even to the 1,680 mark, by the end of the day, analysts note.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 13:48:58.The situation in the Georgian-Ossetian conflict zone is ‘far from normal’, deputy chief of the Russian armed forces General Staff Anatoly Nogovitsyn told a press conference today. He pointed out that the situation in both the Georgian-Ossetian and Georgian-Abkhaz conflict zones could not be characterized as stable. Nogovitsyn also noted that Georgia’s armed forces were massing in the central part of Georgia, restoring their military efficiency and prepared for further actions. In particular, they conducted reconnaissance, as well as prepared military actions in the Georgia-Ossetian conflict zone.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 12:55:06.A Russian convoy of trucks loaded with humanitarian aid for South Ossetians is to set out from Vladikavkaz, the capital city of the Russian region of North Ossetia, for Tskhinvali today, said Sergei Shatirov, First Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council’s industrial policy committee and a member of the coordination council for humanitarian aid set up by the Russian parliament’s upper house. He noted that articles of prime necessity, as well as refrigerators, furniture, and power generators, would be delivered to Tskhinvali. This is everything South Ossetians need the most at the moment, Shatirov stated. Russia plans to send a total of 260 tonnes of humanitarian aid collected by the Federation Council along with the country’s constituent entities, according to Shatirov.

RBC, 22.08.2008, Moscow 09:45:04.Russia’s cooperation with NATO is a complex issue, and until the government makes a decision on its future, military cooperation with the alliance has been temporarily frozen, the Mayak radio station reported Russian envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin as saying. Rogozin pointed out that Russia’s Defense Ministry had sent a formal notice to NATO that Moscow was halting military cooperation. The alliance has already confirmed its receipt.