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Today in Russian Business – June 9, 2010

Bloomberg reports that President Dmitry Medvedev will set out upon his upcoming trip to the US with a ‘solid pack of documents’ to be signed, including a large number of commercial agreements.  A total of 36,000 unemployed Russians founded their own small businesses in the first quarter of 2010.  Russia’s United Grain Company wants to reduce handling costs for grain exports by about $20 a metric ton to sharpen its competitive edge.  The company estimates that $1.6 billion investment in infrastructure is needed by 2015 if Russia is to achieve its goal of higher grain capacities.  According to Reuters, Russia’s largest steel maker, Severstal, intends to idle its facilities in Maryland plant for 30 days because of insufficient demand.  Russia’s MTB Group plans to open U.S. footwear retailer Brown Shoe’s Naturalizer stores in Russia and Ukraine.  Car sales increased by 31% in May.   Ukraine has received a $2 billion loan from Russia, and Kiev may seek more from Moscow (and other countries) if the IMF rejects its $19 billion loan request.  Sberbank chief German Gref has denied rumors that the lender is planning to buy a Ukrainian bank.