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Today in Russian Business – July 23, 2010

The current drought is destroying harvests (current losses estimated at 10 million hectares) and hampering grain export agreements, according to the SovEcon research center, in anticipation that the government could impose export caps.  But the drought is working wonders for Kvas.  Oleg Deripaska has agreed to team up with China North Industries to jointly develop mine and auto assets, in an agreement hailed as symbolic of partnership between Russia and China.  Kazakhstan’s Antitrust Agency has reversed its decision to approve Polyus Gold’s bid to acquire a controlling stake in KazakhGold.  Decreased metal prices are keeping steel makers from complying with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s drive to convert to long-term consumer contracts to control price volatility and complaints about high prices.  ‘At a time of global economic pain, you might think that pouring public money into a modern-day space race would be the last thing on any self-respecting world leader’s mind‘…