LONG READ: How a V-shaped market and ageing pipes and fields sent gas prices soaring

Ben Aris in Berlin September 26, 2021

Russia has been accused of cutting gas supplies to Europe to force the EU to certify its new Nord Stream 2 pipeline, but most of the record-breaking prices can be explained by steep V-shaped market forces and ageing fields and pipelines.

Russian mobile operator MTS to invest $100mn in AI startups across the world

East West Digital News in Moscow September 26, 2021

MTS AI, the artificial intelligence arm of Russian telco MTS, is launching an international acceleration programme and venture fund to invest in AI startups across the world.

Russian retail investors “shoot the moon” using social media to pick stocks

Ben Aris in Berlin September 26, 2021

Russia’s retailed equity boom is gathering momentum and it is, like elsewhere, increasingly being driven by social media, according to a survey carried out by VTB Capital called “To the moon: Scoring social stock sentiment."

Novatek deputy chairman arrested over allegedly hiding $93mn from IRS

bne IntelliNews September 24, 2021

The deputy chairman and former CFO of Russia’s second-largest gas producer Novatek, Florida businessman Mark Gyetvay, has been arrested in the US on tax charges relating to $93mn that was hidden in offshore accounts.

ING: ECB’s push for net-zero carbon will grow ESG credit

Timothy Rahill Credit Strategist at ING in Amsterdam, Jeroen van den Broek Global Head of Sector Research at ING in Amsterdam September 24, 2021

In the push for reducing carbon, significant investment will be necessary, and in turn, funding will be required. This will provide growth for the credit market, and in particular for anything associated with ESG.

Russian petrochemical giant Sibur merges with rival TAIF

Ben Aris in Berlin September 24, 2021

Russia’s biggest petrochemicals company Sibur has closed a deal to take over 100% of its Tatarstan-based rival TAIF in an equity swap that will leave the shareholders of TAIF with 15% of the merged company and bonds.

Russia’s Duma elections statistics: the comet effect and the Moscow blob

bne IntelliNews September 24, 2021

The Russian physicist and election statistics expert Sergey Shpilkin has released another two charts on voting patterns in the recent Duma elections that show a “comet effect” and a “Moscow blob”.

bneGREEN: Green Deal, CBAM poses high risks to poorer African, Eastern European countries

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh September 23, 2021

The EU’s Green Deal and Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism will hit the EU’s trading partners in Africa and non-EU Eastern Europe particularly hard.

Russian Softline pursues international expansion in Baltic states, Belarus, Egypt

East West Digital News in Moscow September 23, 2021

Softline, an international solution and service provider with Russian roots, is pursuing its international expansion with two deals announced this month.

In a first, US sanctions Russian crypto exchange linked to ransomware

bne IntelliNews September 23, 2021

The US Treasury Department has for the first time sanctioned cryptocurrency exchange, a Russian-based Suex that is registered in the Moscow City business compound and operates physical as well as virtual exchanges.

bneGREEN: Greenwashing: regulators flex muscles as the market remains in flux

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh September 22, 2021

Defining a green investment is crucial to boosting the expansion of renewable energy and preventing the mis-selling of investments by so-called greenwashing, whereby the environmental impact of a product is misrepresented.

Little change to Watcom shopping index in September as things get back to normal

bne IntelliNews September 22, 2021

There was little change to the Watcom Shopping index that measures foot traffic in Moscow’s biggest malls in real time.

STOLYPIN: Communists face new realities as United Russia steals their votes

Mark Galeotti September 22, 2021

The Communist Party of the Russian Federation massively improved its standing following the elections for a new Duma, but was robbed of the much larger share it actually won. The question now is what – if anything – can the KPRF do?

bneGREEN: Russia seeks measures to facilitate decarbonisation

bne IntelliNews September 22, 2021

The Russian government intends to develop a system of support measures, including fiscal ones, to facilitate the introduction of green technologies and emission reductions for businesses, announces First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov.

Statistical study shows half the votes in Duma election were probably fake

bne IntelliNews September 22, 2021

Famous Russian physicist and election statistician Sergei Shpilkin studied the voting patterns in last weekend's Duma election and concluded some 14mn votes, roughly half of all the votes, were faked by the authorities.

MOSCOW BLOG: Why are there no mass street protests after Russia's rigged Duma election?

Ben Aris in Berlin September 21, 2021

On August 9 last year Belarus erupted into mass protests within hours of the polls closing on the massively falsified presidential elections. Russia just had similarly rigged elections but there has been no reaction by the population.

Duma election update: United Russian retains constitutional majority as e-voting used to "edit" results

bne IntelliNews September 20, 2021

As the final results from the weekend’s Duma election come in, the ruling United Russia Party has delivered several surprise results and retaken its constitutional majority with 49.65% of the vote, with 90% of the votes counted.

Russia’s Communist Party makes big gains in the Duma elections as Kremlin efforts to crush smart voting fail

Ben Aris in Berlin September 20, 2021

The Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF) made large gains in Russia’s Duma elections over the weekend in a major upset for the Kremlin, but the ruling United Russia has retained its majority.

SCO leaders tell West to bite bullet and hand billions to Taliban

bne IntelIiNews September 18, 2021

With Afghanistan on brink of humanitarian and economic hell, it might be that only access to capital frozen abroad can stop the country becoming an incurable narco-state that is a hive of terrorism.

The Kremlin takes control of the internet in Russia’s Duma elections

Ben Aris in Berlin September 18, 2021

Russia Duma elections are underway but the election is not about re-electing the ruling United Russia Party but more to ensure that jailed anti-corruption activist and opposition politician Alexei Navalny’s smart voting project is a total failure.