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Today in Russian Business

Toyota plans to begin assembly of a new budget model at its St. Petersburg plant. Accounts of the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) and of a number of Russia’s companies have been frozen in France under the Swiss Noga lawsuit – Russia’s debt to the firm reportedly amounts to $110 million. A legal representative for Bank of New York Mellon will appear for the first time in the Russian courts to defend the bank against allegations in a $22.5 billion money-laundering case. Despite the New Year business slump in the country, a new report says that Russian funds attracted $212 million of investors’ money in the first two weeks of January, second only to India. The current battle for Baltic Beverages Holding, or BBH, lies behind a booming Russian beer market. US brewer Anheuser-Busch has approached British peer Scottish & Newcastle about helping it in its bid for full control of BBH. Nitol Solar, the Russia-based company that makes silicon for the solar industry, is planning a listing on the London Stock Exchange, which is expected to value the company at about $1 billion. Russian companies including Norilsk Nickel and Evraz Group bought a record $47.8 billion of foreign assets last year.