According to the Moscow Times, Russia’s inflation rate in 2009 will be far less than had originally been predicted. Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin is avoiding over-optimism, saying Russia will meet the target of 13%, although ‘maybe it will be even less’. Russia is considering an extensive bail out of banks, surpassing that undertaken by the US, reports the Financial Times. Telenor is apparently ready to approve a proposal by Alfa group to merge VimpelCom and Ukraine’s Kyivstar. A consortium of VTB Capital, Fraport and Copelouzos Group has announced it has won a tender to develop and reconstruct St Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport, beating two other consortiums (one of which included Deripaska’s Basic Element). During Medvedev’s visit to Namibia a memorandum of understanding was signed allowing Russian fishing ships to operate in Namibian waters. The Moscow Times reports on how at the Inter RAO meeting, Deputy Prime Minister and Inter chairman Igor Sechin managed to coax shareholders into abandoning their demands for slashing managements payouts. Exiled tycoon Boris Berezovsky has been convicted in absentia of large-scale fraud for a second time.