Today in Russian Business – May 27, 2011

President Dmitry Medvedev ordered ministers to quit their roles at state firms, but Sberbank board member and central bank governor Sergei Ignatyev wants to keep his seat: ‘If there will be an order from President (to remove central bank’s officials from the board) we will do it. But I do not want to impose restrictions on myself. I feel a personal responsibility for Sberbank.‘  Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says the government is working on finding a way to cut the 34% social security tax currently burdening companies, and is talking about making Russia one of the world’s top five economies within a decade.  Also part of his bid to win popularity is a promise to suspend auto inspections for the rest of the year.  The U.S. is ‘nearly bankrupt‘, according to VTB CEO Andrei Kostin.  Basic Element (Basel) discusses its deficit of engineers, project managers and highly qualified workers – a problem affecting many other Russian companies.  The Moscow Times has more information on the $2.84 billion North Caucasus tourism deal signed by France and Russia; the two sides also reached an agreement on the sale of four Mistral helicopters to France.  Alexander Lebedev has offered his experience to the F.S.B. to aid the fight against corruption.  Roman Abramovich’s Moscow studio apartment is for sale, and is expected to sell for double its worth thanks to its heritage.  Here’s a profile on exiled billionaire Ashot Egiazaryan, who says that his rivals are staging a smear campaign against him.