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Today in Russian Business – August 18, 2009

Banks have tripled their activity levels when it comes to seeking out overdue corporate loans, after President Medvedev berated banks for indulging corporate borrowers.  400 towns that rely on one single employer (such as Pikalyovo) will be entitled to $315 million in state aid in 2010, under criteria recently decided by the government.  Apparently Russia’s industrial production decreased by 14.2% in the first seven months of this year in comparison with the same period of 2008.  Diamond miner Alrosa claims to have seen an increase in market demand for the first time this year.  Belgian visual systems company Barco is teaming up with airport management tools manufacturer Monitor Soft to crack the Russian aerospace market.  Following Polyus Gold’s acquisition of a controlling stake in KazakhGold, the CEO of Polyus has become the chairman and CEO of the Kazakh miner.  Nearly 80% of Russians think that the measures taken by regional authorities to deal with crisis are ineffectual, if indeed they are aware that any steps have been taken at all.