Today in Russian Business – Oct 31, 2008

The financial crisis: Russia hasn’t seen anything like the worst of it yet, says this article. The country’s gold and foreign exchange reserves have fallen below $500 billion for the first time in eight months, with this week’s fall being the most dramatic yet. Russia’s bailout plan is seeing most of its money going to ‘well-connected Kremlin insiders’, with oligarch assets possibly being exchanged with the state as collateral – ‘a Kremlin trap’. AvtoVAZ’s warehouses ‘have been glutted,’ forcing the carmaker to halt production this winter, and Russian miners are anticipating a cut in production next year. A new railway being built between Russia and China could offer ‘a potential supply route for iron ore produced by Anglo-Russian miner Aricom’. The LSE has postponed its plan to open a Russian office.