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Today in Russian Business – Jan 31, 2011

‘Why shouldn’t Western companies invest in Russia? The answer is because it’s Russian-roulette capitalism. It’s entirely possible at any point to literally have your head blown off’: Bill Browder is interviewed on RFE/RL.  The Micex dropped 16% when Khodorkovsky was arrested in 2003; as the outcome of his second trial was announced, it went up 1%, so, the BBC wonders, does the Yukos case really effect investor confidence?  A new high-speed railway link from Samara to St Petersburg is one new investment option for foreign businesses.  Russian investigators have asked a court to sanction the arrest of Liberal Democratic Party member Ashot Yegiazaryan on major fraud charges.  Italian designer Giorgio Armani’s hotel group is, according to the Independent, planning to develop a $150 million complex in Russia’s restive Caucasus region.  Norway’s Telenor group apparently hopes to use legal action to block Vimpelcom’s $6 billion bid to develop its telecoms empire outside of Russia.  A positive outlook for Russia’s grain harvest.  Director-General of the WTO, Pascal Lamy, has said that Russia could conclude its lengthy negotiations and join the organization this year