Today in Russian Business – April 11, 2008

Industrial giant ArcelorMittal has completed the purchase of three coal mines in Russia from Severstal for a total of $651.8 million. Merrill Lynch Chairman and CEO John Thain says the group is placing its bets on growth from abroad, citing strong growth potential in countries such as India, Brazil and Russia. A subsidiary fund of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is pouring $15 million in investments to develop a WiMax network with the company Tascom, and later hold in IPO for the group in about three years. Trade Minister Elvira Nabiullina is challenging Sergei Chemezov’s push for Russian Technologies (the state arms exporter) to gobble up government stakes in more than 500 companies. Nabiullina is demanding that Chemezov explain why the state corporation seeks stakes in passenger airlines and a 38% stake in the truck maker Kamaz. Gazprombank has reached a $47.7 million deal with the Canadian mining group Fortress Minerals to take over 51% of the production of the major Svetloe gold deposit.