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Today in Russian Business – April 8, 2010

President Dmitry Medvedev’s first visit to Slovakia saw him saluting the countries’ strong economic partnership and overseeing the signing of several energy and transportation deals, including a plan to create a research center in Bratislava and the extension of a wide-track railway by Russian Railways.  Alisher Usmanov, who holds a 31% stake in Megafon, has filed a Moscow lawsuit to prevent two other stakeholders, TeliaSonera and Altimo, from combining their holdings.  First deputy prime minister Igor Shuvalov says that Russia could scrap the rouble and introduce a common currency with Belarus and Kazakhstan in a bid to broaden alliances and reduce dependence on the dollar.  Deputy Finance Minister Dmitry Pankin says Russia could concentrate its borrowing within its own borders to bolster government funds, as improved liquidity in the ruble bond market allows the limiting of foreign loans.  The first-ever National Award for Applied Economics will be conferred today – ‘a serious initiative that manages to unite Russian economists‘.  This article tries to cast Russia’s business corruption in a new light. Another Russian source is optimistic about the ‘rebounding economy‘.