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Today in Russian Business – Jan 26, 2012

Without mentioning the Jackon-Vanik amendment explicitly, U.S. President Barack Obama has called on lawmakers to approve permanent normal trade relations with Russia, with Michael McFaul indicating afterwards that it will be repealed.  The First Deputy Chairman of the central bank says that interest rates will not be cut at this time, due to inflation slowing to 4.7%.  Gold miner Petropavlovsk forsees 2012 output rising by 11% on last year’s totals.  Russia may begin imposing protective grain duties from April of this year; EU milling wheat futures hit a four-month high yesterday in part due to rumours of possible Russian export curbs.  Social network Vkontakte.ru may sell a small stake in advance of its IPO this year or next.  Standard & Poor’s have released a report on the high risks faced by Russian insurers.  Will Sberbank benefit from the European debt crisis? ‘Sberbank and Troika are eyeing moves into neighboring European countries.