Today in Russian Business – Aug 9, 2011

The MICEX fell 5.5% yesterday (its most significant drop since 2009) and the ruble has lost 3% against the dollar on the back of the U.S. credit downgrade.  The Finance Ministry insist that the economy is ‘clearly underrated’ by international agencies, but with the price of oil falling, says the FT, ‘does Russia really deserve an upgrade?’  The Moscow Times reports in detail on Russia’s planned borrowing for 2012-2014.  Russia’s ban on raw vegetables from the E.U. lifts today.  Property developers in London are apparently reconstructing the interiors of historic buildings to suit Slavic tastes.  Sberbank is now accepting e-payments;  it has announced healthy 2011 profits, driven, says Reuters, by provisions writebacks.  A banking consortium led by VTB has won a $4.73 billion tender for an infrastructure project in St. Petersburg.  ‘For the world’s largest country in terms of territory, television is essentially the only means of communicating the national agenda.