Today in Russian Business – August 4, 2009

Russia’s ‘unsustainable’ budget deficit is reportedly ‘a major threat to economic stability‘.  Sevastopol market in southern Moscow is the latest market to be raided by police, heightening fears among law-abiding traders that they may be caught up in the clamp down on contraband.  Apparently ruling on timber laid out in the Forest Code is spooking foreign businesses who are deterred by high costs of investing.  Mechel will take over the running of the Zlatoust steel mill in the Chelyabinsk region, which had previously filed for bankruptcy.  Restaurant owner Oleg Tinkov has announced that he is ‘bored’ with his restaurant business, and will consider offers to buy up his stake sent to his livejournal account.  Alrosa has started up sales of unpolished diamonds again after a seven-month hiatus – demand appears to be slowly regaining momentum in the luxury goods market as a whole.  Mosow Mayor Yury Luzhkov has proposed a new punitive measure for business owners who have held back wages – not letting them leave the country.  VTB has announced a worse-than-expected net loss of $661 million in January-March.  One third of Russia’s clothes retailers are apparently facing bankruptcy.