Today in Russian Business – March 12, 2010

Putin’s India visit heralds a flurry of deals in energy, aviation and arms: contracts worth $10 billion are allegedly to be signed.  Improved banking ties may be one branch of the plethora of negotiations.  It is also reported that Alrosa will sign contracts to supply $490 million of diamonds to India in the next three years.  The ruble has reached a 14-month high and looks set to continue rising without a Central Bank intervention.  According to the Forbes rich list, Moscow is in second place for number of billionaires in one city.  Talk that the Finance Ministry is looking to end client confidentiality is apparently sending ripples through the whole of the banking system.  The Ministry may cut the rate for 400 billion rubles worth of subordinated loans that were offered to banks during the crisis period to ease repayment.  Rusnano is reportedly planning to sell the equivalent of $1.7 billion in bonds to finance expansion and development.   Why businesses need to tackle corruption head on, in the Moscow Times.  Russia has approved the resumption of pork imports from US plants.  Uralkali says it feels that the high-profile divorce case of its owner Dmitry Rybolovlev will have no impact on the functioning of the potash miner.  Bloomberg reports that for investors, the new Yanukovych-Azarov diarchy in Ukraine harkens a more stable era of ‘consolidated power’.