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Today in Russian Business – April 16, 2009

The State Duma is considering a bill that would limit executive salaries in companies that receive government aid to $120,000.  Russia’s central bank may reduce the refinancing rate over the next few weeks, in a move towards possible further cuts.  Industrial production contracted by 13.7% in March due to poor sales.  Russia may struggle with an ‘avalanche’ of bad loans this year with 20% of debt in or near default by the year’s end.  Metal and mining company Raspadskaya has announced a net profit increase of 121%.  Alrosa has requested the Finance Ministry to cease selling of diamonds in order to stabilize prices.  Despite rumors of debt, VTB says it could pay out roughly 10% of last year’s net profit in dividends.   A third Carrefour will open in 2009; the French supermarket giant considers Russia a ‘priority’ for expansion.  European travel firm TUI Travel has come to an agreement with Alexei Mordashov’s S-Group Capital for entering the Russian travel market.  Nutrinvestholding, controller of baby food manufacturer Nutritek Group, will default on $50 million of bonds.  Moscow City Hall intends to move factories out of town to make way for housing and commercial development over the next ten years.