Today in Russian Business – June 13, 2011

Friday’s EU-Russia ‘vegetable summit’ ostensibly ended on a happy note with Russia agreeing to lift a ban on vegetable imports from the European Union if the union provides safety guarantees on produce.  According to Reuters, luxury powerhouse LVMH has bought control of Russian beauty products retailer Ile de Beaute, in which it first acquired a minority stake in 2008.  Prime Minister Putin has proposed allotting free land to country-dwelling families with at least three children.  Former Russian oil tycoon Leonid Nevzlin, who has been convicted in absentia of murder in Russia, has reportedly bought a 20% stake in Israel’s Haaretz newspaper.  According to the Wall Street Journal, Russians have a surprisingly light tax burden in comparison with their European counterparts.  As Belarus prepares to sell off its assets, President Alexander Lukashenko plans to drive a hard bargain, arguing that the country’s prize asset, potash miner Belaruskali, is worth $30 billion.