Today in Russian Business – July 12, 2011

The privatization program is growing, with the new plan (not yet approved) aiming to bring in over 1 trillion rubles per year from 2012-2016.  Visa-free travel with the E.U. is coming closer to being a reality.  ‘While income distribution in Russia creeps towards Latin American levels of inequality […] the state has incubated an ever more entrenched and inaccessible elite that now controls government and business.’  Results from tenders for kiosks in downtown Moscow may be canceled, after the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service opened an investigation into a number of small enterprises, accusing them of raising prices.  Spanish retailer Mango is looking to double its current number of Russia stores over the next three years.  Vladimir Putin on the U.S.’ decision to make a dollar injection into its economy: ‘we do not print a reserve currency but what are they doing? They are behaving like hooligans, switching on the printing press and tossing them around the whole world’.  Trade between Russia and Belarus will exceed $40 billion this year.  The Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank anticipates that capital flight will relax for the remainder of the year, citing a June inflow of $3 billion and a stabilizing economic situation.  Vegetable imports to Russia from Greece and the Czech Republic have resumed.  Sberbank has agreed to invest $800 million in the Skolkovo business center to create a technology park that will house its I.T. structure.