Today in Russian Business – Jan 14, 2010

Despite bi-lateral trade falling by 40% in 2009, Putin has asserted that economic relations between Turkey and Russia remain strong, and the latter is ready to help in the privatization of Turkish companies.  It may be clouded in warning signs, but Reuters reports that the initial public offering of Rusal was fully subscribed by institutional investors on the third day of its bookbuilding process.  Why Russia is not offended by its exclusion from the upcoming G8 meeting of finance ministers.  Moscow city government is apparently harboring an ambitious plan to rescue the Atlant-Soyuz airline from bankruptcy.  German carrier Blue Wings, part-owned by Alexander Lebedev, has suspended operations temporarily as it deals with financial worries.  As Minsk and Moscow battle it out over energy, a Belarussian company has re-neged on an agreement to build a biathlon complex, a ‘Belarussian corner‘ for the 2014 Sochi Olympics.  Russian poultry prices have grown by as much as 20% since health officials banned U.S. imports on January 1.   Svyazinvest is apparently considering buying billionaire Alisher Usmanov’s 31% stake in mobile operator Megafon.  It is estimated, according to Bloomberg, that Russia’s government probably ran a deficit of $74.2 billion last year, almost 27% smaller than previously estimated.