Russian News: December 18th, 2007

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This is Russian News day!

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 19:55:09.Over half of Russians (53 percent) believe the recent State Duma elections to have been free, democratic and fair, an opinion poll held by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center revealed. 19 percent of respondents held the opposite point of view. The opinion that the elections were fairly democratic is more widespread in rural (57 percent) rather than urban Russia (48-52 percent). The estimates, however, have changed for the better since the previous election of 2003, when 49 percent of poll participants thought the elections had been democratic, and 26 percent condemning them as unfair.Half the respondents said they saw no other party that should have been granted seats in the Duma apart from the four parties surpassing the threshold. Others regretted that the Agrarian Party (19 percent) and Yabloko (5 percent) were not on the list, as well as Civil Force, the Union of Right Forces, the Party of Social Justice and Patriots of Russia (4 percent for each).The poll was held among 1,600 Russians in 153 locations in 46 of Russia’s regions and republics on December 8-9, 2007. The margin of error does not exceed 3.4 percent.

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 18:57:03.The United Russia party has officially nominated Deputy PM Dmitry Medvedev as its candidate for President at the close of its 8th congress, with 478 delegates voting in favor, and 1 against the nomination….(click: read more for more news)

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 17:54:38.Gazprom is willing to cooperate with the National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) in the diagnostics, maintenance, exploitation, and modernization of Iran’s gas network, as well as in raising its transportation and energy efficiency. The matter was discussed at a meeting of the energy working group of the Russian-Iranian trade and economic cooperation commission, the Russian Industry and Energy Ministry’s press office said in a statement today. The meeting was chaired by Russia’s Deputy Industry and Energy Minister Anatoly Yanovsky and Iranian Deputy Oil Minister Hossein Noghrehkar-Shirazi.According to the statement, the parties made a high evaluation of Gazprom’s experience in servicing Iran’s South Pars field project.

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 16:51:46.Russian President Vladimir Putin has agreed to become the country’s next Prime Minister after he steps down in March. The Russian leader made this statement at today’s eighth session of United Russia. Putin noted that there would be no changes in the roles of the President and the government.

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 12:20:57.The weighted average euro exchange rate closed at 35.62 RUR/EUR at this morning’s special trading session for today deals, which is RUR0.22 lower than the official rate set by the Bank of Russia for December 17. Meanwhile, the low on euro deals stood at 35.56 RUR/EUR. The current developments on MICEX may be attributed to the euro’s significant decrease against the euro on international exchanges. The latter is now trading at almost USD1.4380, down from nearly USD1.4610 at the same time on Friday. Consequently, the US currency has surged 1.5 percent against the euro on the global market since then.

RBC, 17.12.2007, Moscow 11:10:47.According to unaudited date, Magnit’s net retail revenue climbed 40.5 percent to RUR82.443bn (approx. USD3.36bn) in January-November 2007 compared to the same period a year earlier, the retail chain indicated in its official statement. The company’s revenue grew 49.15 percent to almost RUR3.212bn in dollar terms. The company opened 228 new stores, bringing their total number to 2,121 shops.

RBC, 14.12.2007, Minsk 19:15:51.Russia and Belarus are to develop a program for a common foreign policy for 2008-2009, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting of the Supreme Council of the Union State in Minsk today. He reiterated that the international cooperation of the two countries was implemented on the basis of an exisiting target program.The leaders of the Union State should seek to create a common economic space, Putin stated, adding that trade between Russia and Belarus was expected to top $24bn in 2007, an impressive 20 percent increase from the previous year.

That is all for today as far as news is concerned!


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