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Archive for the ‘Russia’ Category

John Beyrle, US Ambassador to Russia, on the Rule of Law

January 21, 2010 Leave a comment

Ambassador Beyrle said,

Corruption in the Russian government and especially in the judicial system…is still rampant in Russia.

Categories: Economic impact, Russia

NEWS: European Court of Human Rights Delays YUKOS v. Russia

January 12, 2010 Leave a comment

Today, the European Court of Human Rights issued a press release announcing the postponement of the hearing until March 4, 2010. This is the third delay by Russian authorities.

Putin’s TARP Plan

January 6, 2010 Leave a comment

According to Jacob Plieth of the Wall Street Journal, if the Rusal IPO goes as planned later this month, it will be a “latter-day miracle.” As you recall, Goldman Sachs declined to be an underwriter for this deal and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange has dragged its feet, even though completing this complex IPO would mean millions in fees and additional revenue for the exchange and the investment bankers willing to bring troubled Russian companies to the international capital markets counter.

Rusal is a company that operates with $16 billion in debt and even with a partial sale of Norilsk Nickel and the pending partial IPO, there are doubts that a company hasn’t reported operational profitability can keep up with its interest payments.

Categories: Rusal, Russia Tags: , , ,

Igor Sechin – Russia’s New Decider?

December 29, 2009 Leave a comment

In a recent Newsweek article, “Sechin Evolution into Reportedly Number Two Man in Russian Government Examined,” Vice Premier Igor Sechin is revealed to be the true power broker in the Russian White House, “the country’s main manager” and “expanding…spheres of influence.” Additionally, IHS Global Insight recently reported:

…that Deputy Prime Minister, Igor Sechin, has reminded investors that new amendments to the law on foreign investment in state–controlled strategic mineral fields are not designed to relinquish state control over the strategic assets but rather to offer an asset-swap to gain a foothold in Russia’s natural resources industry. Sechin’s comments are a stark reminder why the investors are wary of venturing into Russia in the first place. The Kremlin needs to do more to assure the foreign investors, already guarded by the infamous Yukos and BP nationalisation cases, that they will be offered fair compensation and will have a clear explanation of what constitutes strategically important resources. IHS Global Insight Daily Analysis, Russian Prime Minister Seeks Foreign Investors’ Advice to Improve Investment Law, by Lilit Gevorgyan, 23 December, 2009

Indeed, with Sechin as Russia’s Vice Premier for Industry and Energy, the risk of corporate raiding by government officials remains high and President Medvedev’s talk of ending legal nihilism, will be just that, talk.