Today in Russian Business – March 27, 2012

Ratings agency Standard and Poor’s has warned that should the price of oil drop, Russia faces having its debt rating cut.  French food giant Danone apparently plans to invest around $700 million in Russia over the next five to seven years in a market where they see ‘great potential’.  Russia’s environmental regulator has denied rumors that it has withdrawn licenses belonging to miner Mechel.   Financial statements published by state-controlled Channel One have revealed that the station only survived 2009 and 2010 thanks to billions of rubles in government subsidies.  According to the Moscow Times, the state budget has apparently taken into account the possibility of restructuring $3.4 billion in tax debts for companies in the military-industrial sector. Dmitry Alimov of Ru-Net has set up a $50 million venture capital fund to invest in early-stage Russian internet consumer businesses.  Steel giant Novolipetsk Steel intends to spend $1.7 billion on capital expenditures this year to increase output by at least a quarter.