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Keyword: oligarchs

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  • Poroshenko vows to retain east Ukraine

    05/26/2014 11:16:58 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 56 replies
    AFP ^ | May 27, 2014
    Billionaire oligarch Petro Poroshenko says he would not let rebel-held east Ukraine become another Somalia as he prepared to take over the presidency with a clear signal from Moscow that it is ready to work with his government. Poroshenko has moved swiftly to stamp his authority as Ukraine's new leader after claiming victory in Sunday's presidential election, with partial results showing he trounced his rivals in the first round. He said Ukraine would press on with an offensive to crush the pro-Russian separatists waging an insurgency in the eastern industrial belt, despite Moscow warning it would be a "colossal mistake"....
  • Shocking Opulence Revealed as Ukraine Leader Flees Home

    02/23/2014 8:18:05 AM PST · by rktman · 51 replies
    Newsmax.com ^ | 2/22/2014 | unknown
    A vast country estate, marble-lined mansions, a private golf course and zoo: the unimaginable luxury of the private residence of departed Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych flung open for all to see. As parliament voted to oust Yanukovych Saturday and he fled to a pro-Russian bastion in east Ukraine after months of bloody protest again his rule, thousands of Ukrainians wondered awestruck around the breathtaking luxury of his abandoned property some 110 miles from Kiev after it was taken by demonstrators. "I am in shock," said retired military servicewoman Natalia Rudented, as she looked out over the manicured lawns studded with...
  • Russia's support for Cyprus' seizures of deposits may mean big money already out

    03/27/2013 8:01:20 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 4 replies
    foxnews.com ^ | March 27, 2013 | Alec Luhn
    As crisis-ridden Cyprus proceeds with a bank restructuring program that will take as much as 40 percent from large account holders, most of whom are Russian, the Kremlin has made an about-face and supported the plan. Commentators wondered how Russia could go along with a restructuring that would cost its citizens an estimated four to six billion euros. The reason may be simple: The biggest Russian account holders already have gotten most of their money out of this island tax haven through a gaping loophole, according to some reports. .... After some initial bluster, the Russian government has supported the...
  • At Putin's side, an army of Jewish billionaires

    07/03/2012 2:35:22 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 10 replies
    jpost.com ^ | June 26, 2012 | GIL SHEFLER
    When the air-conditioning broke down at the reception for the unveiling ceremony of the Red Army monument in Netanya on Monday, it didn’t matter if you were a billionaire, multimillionaire or broke. Everyone suffered the same. In one corner sat Mikhail Fridman, the seventh-richest man in Russia, whose fortune is estimated at $15 billion by Forbes. He stayed hydrated in the sweltering heat by sipping a glass of water. In another stood Moshe Kantor, the chemicals tycoon who Forbes said was worth $2.3b. He repeatedly removed the beads of sweat from his head with a napkin. The two men were...
  • Rick Perry and Texas Job Numbers ( How good was job creation in the Lone Star State?)

    08/16/2011 10:46:00 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 31 replies
    Political Math ^ | 08/16/2011
    Rick Perry And Texas Job Numbers Full disclosure: I don't like Rick Perry for our next president. I have my reasons that aren't worth going into here. However, when I was watching the GOP debate and pro-Perry people started bringing up Rick Perry's job numbers as a cudgel against other candidates, I looked into the BLS data on Texas jobs. Having familiarized myself with the data, I started noticing claims on the Texas jobs data that started popping up that directly contradicted what I was seeing in the data. So I wanted to clear up a couple of these...
  • Russia’s grasp on electricity tightens

    07/09/2011 2:07:39 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 2 replies
    ft.com ^ | July 7, 2011 | Catherine Belton
    Viktor Vekselberg, the Russian billionaire, has agreed to merge his power assets into the power-generation holding of Gazprom to create a state-controlled national electricity champion that will control a quarter of the country’s electricity market. Analysts said the merger announced on Thursday risked overturning the country’s hard-won privatisation of the sector, one of the few successful market reforms of the past decade, with state control of the sector set to increase from 50 per cent to 70 per cent as a result of the deal. “After the merger, the state will simply dominate the market,” said Derek Weaving, electricity sector...
  • A Secretive Banking Elite Rules Trading in Derivatives

    12/12/2010 8:27:37 AM PST · by Mojave · 16 replies
    New York Times ^ | 12/11/2010 | Louise Story
    On the third Wednesday of every month, the nine members of an elite Wall Street society gather in Midtown Manhattan. The men share a common goal: to protect the interests of big banks in the vast market for derivatives, one of the most profitable — and controversial — fields in finance.
  • Russian's new mega-yacht leaves German dockyard one year late

    12/10/2010 6:47:22 AM PST · by sukhoi-30mki · 35 replies · 1+ views
    Russian's new mega-yacht leaves German dockyard one year late Berlin - The biggest luxury yacht on the planet, the 535- foot Eclipse, on Thursday left the German dockyard where it was built, presumably bound for delivery to Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich. Legends have surrounded the huge white boat ever since its keel was laid down in a Hamburg dockyard. It is being delivered a year late, reportedly because of a dispute with Abramovich over the price. Some insiders claimed this week the wallpaper was manta-ray leather and the decoration included real fossils. But they denied claims in British tabloids that...
  • Obama Suing DuPage County, Illinois For Enforcing Immigration Laws…

    07/14/2010 11:09:56 AM PDT · by Mobile Vulgus · 9 replies
    Publius Forum ^ | 07/14/10 | Warner Todd Huston
    On the heels of news that the Obama administration is suing the state of Arizona over its new anti-illegal immigration law come news that the same treatment is being leveled at DuPage County, Illinois whose policies almost mirror the Arizona law… Well, that is the headline that should be in the papers today if, that is, the Obama administration actually cared about law instead of only looking for a convenient political target which is all the administration's focus on Arizona really is. It isn't about immigration, illegals, the law, or any legitimate thing other than pure partisan politics. Obama thinks...
  • Russian tycoon to support U.S. Fort Ross

    Head of Russia's Skolkovo research hub Viktor Vekselberg signed an agreement on Tuesday with California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on the maintenance and protection of the U.S. Fort Ross national park. Fort Ross is a former Russian settlement with a wooden fortress on the Pacific Coast, 80 km (50 miles) north of San Francisco. It is a U.S. National Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. California cut funding to its national landmarks in 2008 because of the financial downturn. "The fact that such an exceptional historic object like Fort Ross is located here interested me,"...
  • The Bernanke Plan: Sacrifice Savers to Recapitalize Banks and Benefit Debtors

    04/01/2010 7:32:45 AM PDT · by arthurus · 7 replies · 801+ views
    Seeking Alpha ^ | March 31, 2010 | TraderMark
    Finally, someone is speaking up on a theme we've been promoting for a long while - one of the many "arbitrages" currently going on in the US. In this case, throwing America's savers under the bus, so that (a) any 4-year-old may run a bank successfully simply by turning on the light in the morning [Apr 20, 2009: How Banks will "Outearn" their Losses] and (b) so that debtors may benefit. What is sad to see is the potential for the desperate American saver - who has been hit by multiple Federal Reserve induced bubbles - being set up to...
  • Ukraine’s oligarchs place their poll bets

    01/14/2010 2:16:14 PM PST · by Tailgunner Joe · 7 replies · 830+ views
    ft.com ^ | January 14, 2010
    The economic crisis has hit Ukraine’s business oligarchs hard. But not so hard as to stop them throwing their money and their influence behind the top contenders in the country’s presidential election. “Their pockets are not as deep as they were,” says Vadim Karasiov, a political adviser to President Viktor Yushchenko. “But in a gamble, they are putting their chips on a strong president who could defend their interests.” In the first presidential election since Mr Yushchenko’s Orange Revolution triumph in 2004, the biggest beneficiary of billionaire backing is Viktor Yanukovich, the opposition leader defeated back then by Mr Yushchenko...
  • Russians circle Ukraine group

    01/05/2010 11:42:19 AM PST · by Tailgunner Joe · 130+ views
    ft.com ^ | January 5, 2010
    An unnamed Russian group is close to buying control of one of recession-hit Ukraine’s largest steel groups, in a deal that risks causing political controversy in Kiev in the run-up to this month’s presidential election. The Financial Times has learnt that the debt-laden ISD Corporation, which has plants in Poland and Hungary as well as Ukraine, could be sold later this month in a transaction valuing the group up to $2bn (€1.4bn, £1.3bn) with Vnesheconombank, the Russian state bank, playing a role in the acquisition. News of the deal could raise political tensions in Ukraine, where Yulia Tymoshenko, the prime...
  • China urges Russian calm on bazaar crackdown

    07/17/2009 3:01:56 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 10 replies · 752+ views
    AFP ^ | July 17, 2009
    China has called on Russia not to overreact in its clampdown on a Moscow bazaar, home to tens of thousands of Chinese traders and well-known for its thriving contraband trade. The unexpected shutdown of the sprawling Cherkizovsky Market in the Russian capital last month has caused "enormous economic losses" to Chinese traders there, the commerce ministry said in a statement posted on its website. "The Chinese side pays deep attention to this and... urges the Russian side to handle the issue with discretion," said ministry spokesman Yao Jian in the statement. The statement urged Russian authorities to protect the legal...
  • Tycoons hope Obama can boost US-Russia business

    07/08/2009 1:47:47 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 158+ views
    bakersfieldnow.com ^ | July 7, 2009
    Russia's top tycoons on Tuesday expressed hope that US President Barack Obama's visit to Russia would help boost lacklustre business ties as Moscow and Washington seek to warm up diplomatic relations. A host of Russian and US companies are aiming to capitalise on a "reset" of political ties expected from Obama's two-day meetings with Russian leaders at a parallel business forum. Viktor Vekselberg, a billionaire tycoon and head of the Renova group, said at the forum that while there were some positive examples in Russia-US business relations, that cooperation has not become systematic yet. "We are going around in circles...
  • Why are we subsidizing Russian companies on energy? (outrageous)

    07/06/2009 5:30:41 PM PDT · by pissant · 11 replies · 365+ views
    Hot air ^ | 7/6/09 | Ed Morrissey
    The Obama administration and the Democrats insist that the money the government gets from cap-and-trade will benefit the creation of clean-energy initiatives in the US, making us the world leader. If so, someone should tell Senators Evan Bayh and Dick Lugar. The two have partnered on earmarks that will subsidize a Russian company in the engineering and production of lithium-ion batteries: The Indiana lawmakers have secured $6.5 million in congressional earmarks for Ener1, Inc., and have talked up the company’s efforts to secure a slice of nearly $3 billion in two Energy Department programs offering grants and loans as part...
  • Russia hopes to get behind the wheel

    06/02/2009 4:18:50 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 2 replies · 351+ views
    ft.com ^ | June 2 2009
    When Barack Obama, US president, announced his decision to shepherd General Motors into bankruptcy on Monday, Vladimir Putin, Russian prime minister, was conducting some car industry business of his own. Mr Putin met in Moscow with Siegfried Wolf, co-chief executive of Canada’s Magna International, and German Gref, head of Sberbank, whose groups are due to take a controlling interest in GM’s spun-off European Opel division in a deal to be negotiated in the coming weeks. Two days earlier, when Magna and Sberbank won preferred bidder status over Italy’s Fiat for a joint 55 per cent stake of Opel, Mr Putin...
  • Gazprom lurks behind sale of Hungarian gas distributor

    05/07/2009 6:10:32 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 272+ views
    DPA ^ | May 7, 2009
    Budapest - Hungary's largest gas distribution company Emfesz has been sold to Swiss-based firm RosGas AG, Emfesz spokesman Igor Gallyas said Thursday, confirming a report in the Russian newspaper Vedomosti. The news has prompted speculation that the Russian energy giant Gazprom, which is believed to be behind RosGas, is looking to strengthen its hold over the Hungarian, and by extension, the EU market. Gallyas, speaking to the Hungarian news agency MTI, neither confirmed nor denied the report by Vedomosti that RosGas is part of Gazprom's family of subsidiaries. However, in a statement posted on its website on April 28, Emfesz...
  • Ukraine oligarch buys US coal group

    05/01/2009 8:35:33 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 4 replies · 545+ views
    ft.com ^ | May 1 2009 | Roman Olearchyk
    Metinvest, the steel conglomerate controlled by Ukrainian billionaire Rinat Akhmetov, said yesterday it had acquired West Virginia-headquartered United Coal Company, in a purchase estimated to be worth up to $1bn. Analysts said the deal showed some of Ukraine's leading businessmen were sufficiently cash-rich to make big purchases abroad in spite of a deep recession that has battered their country and halved production at their steel mills. Mr Akhmetov is Ukraine's richest man. The value of Metinvest's UCC purchase, closed between the two privately owned companies, was not disclosed. But local investment bank Dragon Capital estimated that the deal was worth...
  • Saakashvili: Russian Oligarchs Fund Georgia Opposition

    04/12/2009 1:19:27 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 278+ views
    civil.ge ^ | 04/12/2009
    In an interview with Newsweek published on April 11, President Saakashvili speaks of sources of opposition funding, about his U.S. friends, his stance of U.S. under Bush and Obama administrations, as well as about being disappointed with the West putting relationships with Georgia on hold while waiting for the outcome of the street protest rallies. Asked who sponsors the Georgian opposition, Saakashvili responded: “Most of the money—millions of dollars—comes from Russian oligarchs. I have documentary proof of that, which I am not making public yet. Whether the money is being sent from Russia under the supervision of the Russian government,...
  • Berezovsky: 'Dirty Money' Claims

    02/12/2009 2:28:40 PM PST · by Tailgunner Joe · 2 replies · 203+ views
    news.sky.com ^ | February 12, 2009 | Peter Hoskins
    A controversial Russian businessman has accused Vladimir Putin of using "dirty money" to control British companies. Boris Berezovsky, who is wanted in his own country on charges of fraud, told Sky's Jeff Randall that cash stripped from the Russian economy is being siphoned off by an international web of companies. "Putin and his cronies made absolutely dirty money and tried to invest this money all over the world including Britain." .... Mr Berezovsky claims that Moscow is using Iceland to launder "dirty money" before investing in other countries. "You remember three months ago the Russian government declared that they would...
  • Ex-KGB agent seeks to buy London newspaper

    01/15/2009 1:50:53 PM PST · by decimon · 22 replies · 519+ views
    Associated Press ^ | Jan. 15, 2009 | Unknown
    LONDON - Russian billionaire and former KGB spy Alexander Lebedev is trying to buy London's Evening Standard newspaper, British media outlets reported Thursday. > He also is part owner of the Novaya Gazeta newspaper, one of the few media outlets critical of the Russian government.
  • Veteran KGB spy revealed as Deripaska's right-hand man

    10/30/2008 11:58:16 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 2 replies · 289+ views
    thisislondon.co.uk ^ | 10/29/08 | Keith Dovkants
    AN EX-KGB spymaster who subjected the British secret service to its worst embarrassment since the Cold War is the right-hand man of Lord Mandelson's controversial Russian friend Oleg Deripaska, the Evening Standard discloses today. Valery Pechenkin was a high-ranking officer in the KGB and a Colonel-General in its successor, the FSB. He is employed as head of security at Deripaska's company Basic Element, but the part he plays in Deripaska's affairs goes far beyond the role suggested by his job title. According to well-placed sources in Moscow, Pechenkin is one of Deripaska's strongest links to the Kremlin. The veteran spy...
  • Moscow agrees oligarch bail-out

    10/29/2008 5:06:06 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 7 replies · 266+ views
    ft.com ^ | October 29 2008 | Catherine Belton
    Russia’s state development bank on Wednesday approved $10bn (£6bn, €8bn) in refinancing for the country’s cash-strapped oligarchs. This came as the first step of a $50bn government bail-out that could redraw Russia’s business landscape. As part of the package, Oleg Deripaska’s UC Rusal holding company was set to receive a $4.5bn loan. It will use it to repay in full a syndicate of western banks, including Royal Bank of Scotland and Merrill Lynch, that Mr Deripaska has been scrambling to pay by a Friday deadline, people familiar with the situation said. The approval of the government loan – to be...
  • The oligarchs' battle to oust an oil giant

    06/25/2008 1:13:47 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 3 replies · 77+ views
    thisismoney.co.uk ^ | 24 June 2008 | Robert Mendick
    Even in his early days, Mikhail Fridman, a Russian oligarch now worth more than £10bn, displayed the ruthless streak that, 20 years on, is causing BP's senior management at its London HQ in St James's Square alarm and fury in equal measure. Fridman, who has accused BP's respected chairman Peter Sutherland of behaving like a Nazi in a battle over control of Russian oil and gas fields worth billions, first entered the business world cleaning windows in his native Ukraine with help from his university friend German Khan. If legend is to be believed, Fridman, all smiles and charm, would...
  • BP ups stakes by accusing Putin of failing to stop hijack by oligarchs

    06/13/2008 8:40:06 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 4 replies · 163+ views
    guardian.co.uk ^ | June 13 2008 | Terry Macalister
    BP has upped the stakes in its battle for control of its Russian joint venture, by accusing Vladimir Putin of damaging his country's reputation through failing to intervene in the escalating dispute. John Sutherland, the BP chairman, used a press conference in Stockholm to lament the prime minister's lack of action to halt oligarchs using strong-arm tactics to try to take control of TNK-BP. "This is just a return to the corporate raiding activities that were prevalent in Russia in the 1990s. Prime minister Putin has referred to these tactics as relics of the 1990s, but unfortunately our partners continue...
  • Russian Tycoon Buys Stakes in Western Banks: Paper

    06/11/2008 6:15:54 AM PDT · by BloodOrFreedom · 1 replies · 67+ views
    CNBC ^ | 11 June 2008 | reuters
    Bank shares rose on Wednesday after a report that Russian billionaire Suleiman Kerimov is buying stakes in major Western banks and wants other tycoons to join him. Kerimov has been selling his Russian assets, including stakes in the country's biggest bank Sberbank and gas giant Gazprom, to buy stakes in Deutsche, UBS, Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse, Kommersant business daily said, quoting sources. Deutsche shares rose 1.7 percent to 62.99 euros, UBS was up 0.8 percent and Credit Suisse gained 0.6 percent. One source in a major investment bank told Kommersant that Kerimov, Russia's 8th richest man and a member...
  • Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich 'was President Putin's enforcer'

    04/29/2008 10:18:47 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 98+ views
    timesonline.co.uk ^ | April 29, 2008 | Dominic Kennedy
    Roman Abramovich was an undeclared member of President Putin’s regime in Russia when he bought Chelsea Football Club in 2003, documents in a clash-of-the-oligarchs court battle suggested yesterday. The football boss emerges from legal papers signed by Boris Berezovsky, his friend turned rival, as an “enforcer” figure, passing on alleged threats so that the Kremlin could get its way over media and business. Mr Berezovsky, accompanied by minders, arrived at the Commercial Court in London to hear legal arguments in his $4 billion (£2 billion) case against Mr Abramovich over oil and aluminium assets that he claims he was forced...
  • Berezovsky vs. Abramovich

    03/27/2008 8:26:27 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 112+ views
    kommersant.com ^ | Mar. 27, 2008
    Russian Vedomosti newspaper has obtained the text of the suit that Boris Berezovsky filed against Roman Abramovich. The High Court in London registered it January 8, 2008. In the suit, Boris Berezovsky accuses his former partner of trapping him into selling at low prices the stocks of ORT TV Channel, Sibneft and RUSAL. The preliminary hearing is slated for April. Berezovsky said he had owned 49 percent in ORT TV Channel. Some programs covering the sinking of Kursk submarine in August 2000 outraged the Kremlin and Berezovsky was urged to part with the stake for $300 million, but refused to...
  • KGB plot fears as London oligarch vanishes and traces of blood are found in his mansion

    03/22/2008 6:31:11 PM PDT · by zimfam007 · 21 replies · 1,195+ views
    Daily Mail ^ | 3/22/08 | Daniel Boffey, Christopher Leake and Peter Allen
    An international manhunt was launched last night for a Russian-born British media magnate whose mysterious disappearance has possible links to the murder of former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko.
  • Serbia to roll out €30bn sell-off

    02/22/2008 1:58:01 AM PST · by King Lazar · 103+ views
    Financial Times ^ | Published: February 21 2008 19:03 | By Stefan Wagstyl and Neil MacDonald in Belgrade
    Serbia to roll out €30bn sell-off By Stefan Wagstyl and Neil MacDonald in Belgrade Published: February 21 2008 19:03 | Last updated: February 21 2008 19:03 Acting in the teeth of the Kosovo crisis, the Serbian government is rolling out eastern Europe’s biggest privatisation programme. The planned sale of companies is worth an estimated €30bn ($44bn, £23bn), which will include the mass distribution of free shares to about 4m people. With privatisation mostly complete in other ex-communist states, the programme is certain to attract interest from international bankers and institutional investors. The plan could prove controversial for ethnic Serbs because...
  • Kremlin-friendly magnates top Russia rich list

    02/19/2008 8:23:29 AM PST · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 128+ views
    Reuters ^ | Feb 19, 2008
    MOSCOW (Reuters) - Metals magnate Oleg Deripaska is now Russia's richest man, boasting a $40 billion dollar fortune that towers over rival oligarch Roman Abramovich, according to the latest rich list from Russian magazine Finans. Russia's booming economy has also spawned a big increase in dollar billionaires, who now number 101 -- the second largest quantity in the world after the United States, Finans said. The boom in metals prices has helped Deripaska, 40, almost double his net worth over Russia's best-known oligarch, Chelsea Football Club owner Abramovich, who lives mostly in London. Abramovich, whose fortune is mainly in metals,...
  • The dead billionaire and the 'KGB poison killer'

    02/14/2008 10:08:46 AM PST · by Ivan the Terrible · 8 replies · 231+ views
    This is London ^ | 02/14/08 | Keith Dovkants
    What killed Badri Patarkatsishvili? As the police scour his home for clues and a pathologist conducts a post-mortem examination, conspiracy theorists will point to the company he kept on the day he died. On Tuesday afternoon, hours before his death, Patarkatsishvili was with Boris Berezovsky at the law offices of Lord Goldsmith, the former attorney general, in the City. Berezovsky is at the centre of London-based opposition to Russian president Vladimir Putin's government and on Tuesday he, Patarkatsishvili and their friend Yuli Dubov swore witness statements related to various cases in the former Soviet Union involving seizure of assets and...
  • Who Lost Ukraine?

    01/29/2008 9:19:31 PM PST · by jdm · 6 replies · 124+ views
    Weekly Standard ^ | Jan. 30, 2008 | by Reuben F. Johnson
    ~excerpt~ UNLESS YOU'VE BEEN hiding in a cave somewhere or posted to a UN humanitarian assistance project site in North Korea, you know that the latest contest in the U.S. election is over who can come up with the sexiest stimulus package for the economy. Both Obama and Clinton have put forth their own plans as part of campaign one-upmanship. Meanwhile, the Congress has proposed a bipartisan plan that would send checks to taxpayers to encourage extra spending and pump up the economy. Increasing worries about the state of the U.S. economy dominated the sidebar conversations and media coverage of...
  • Report: McCain met with Putin ally

    01/29/2008 2:06:49 PM PST · by Ivan the Terrible · 2 replies · 46+ views
    WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- John McCain's campaign manager reportedly helped arrange the introduction of the Arizona senator to politically connected Russian businessman Oleg Deripaska. The Washington Post Friday said the meeting took place in 2006 at a dinner party in Switzerland and was followed up by a similar encounter in Montenegro seven months later. The Post said there was no evidence that McCain, a Republican presidential hopeful, and Deripaska had any further contact, but the newspaper contended the meeting illustrated the obstacles McCain faces in campaigning as a Washington "outsider" despite his long Senate career. The Switzerland meeting was...
  • $40bn Putin 'Is Now Europe's Richest Man'

    12/21/2007 1:43:47 PM PST · by blam · 13 replies · 84+ views
    The Telegraph (UK) ^ | 12-21-2007 | Adrian Blomfield
    $40bn Putin 'is now Europe's richest man' By Adrian Blomfield in Moscow Last Updated: 6:24pm GMT 21/12/2007 President Vladimir Putin of Russia has been likened to an African plutocrat after a controversial political scientist claimed that he had acquired control of £20 billion in energy assets - enough to make him Europe’s richest man. Putin has denounced the claims as "trash" Stanislav Belkovsky, a colourful figure on the political scene, claimed that Mr Putin had made a multi-billion pound fortune by controlling stakes in three Russian energy companies. The allegations – if true – would suggest that Mr Putin is...
  • Uzbekistan: Alisher Usmanov -- Billionaire With Presidential Ambitions?

    10/21/2007 12:43:23 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 46+ views
    rferl.org ^ | October 16, 2007 | Farangis Najibullah
    October 16, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- He’s one of Russia’s richest men, an oligarch whose industrial empire stretches from mining and media to a stake in London’s famed Arsenal football club. But if Alisher Usmanov seems to have everything he could want, appearances may be deceiving. After all, the Uzbek-born billionaire is widely seen as a possible political heir to Islam Karimov, Uzbekistan’s authoritarian president. Over the past two decades, the Russian tycoon, who hails from one of the Uzbek capital’s most prominent legal families, has amassed a fortune that is estimated at more than $5.5 billion. Yet outside the former...
  • Kremlin Oil Trading

    09/04/2007 5:31:27 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 378+ views
    humanevents.com ^ | 09/04/2007 | Pavel Romanov and Michael J. Economides
    If one thinks that Russian energy re-Sovietization is for some lofty goal such as protecting that country’s national security or managing its oil and gas crown jewels, better think again. There are very fat profits to be made and a lot of them appear to be channeled towards Kremlin cronies and points beyond. Russia is currently producing 1.35 million tons (10 million barrels) of oil per day and, of this, 522 thousand tons (3.5 million barrels) per day is sold either under state-to-state contracts or through international traders. But trading in Russian oil is not for everyone and according to...
  • Rich Russian tries to buy U.S. bomber at air show (B 52)

    08/25/2007 10:11:47 PM PDT · by tlb · 36 replies · 1,441+ views
    Reuters ^ | Aug 24, 2007 | staff
    MOSCOW (Reuters) - A wealthy Russian tried to buy a U.S. B-52 bomber from a group of shocked American pilots at an air show near Moscow, a Russian newspaper reported on Friday. The unidentified Russian, wearing sunglasses and surrounded by bodyguards, approached the U.S. delegation and asked to buy the bomber, the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper said. An astounded member of the U.S. delegation said the bomber was not for sale but that it would cost at least $500 million (249.5 million pounds) if it were to be sold on the spot. "That is no problem. It is such a cool...
  • Russia’s Oligarchs Eager to Join the Space League

    08/06/2007 4:33:18 PM PDT · by KevinDavis · 3 replies · 289+ views
    Kommersant ^ | 08/06/07
    Russia’s Federal Space Agency, Roskosmos, is going through a few applications of wealthy Russians willing to become space tourists, said Alexey Krasnov, head of the manned flight program department at Federal Space Agency, Roskosmos, RSN reported. The first Russian may go off on the space journey as the self-funded tourist already in the fall of next year, Krasnov said, pointing out that the exact name will be known no sooner than financial terms of the flight are approved. Krasnov appeared never doubting Roskosmos ability to agree with Space Adventures on the issue. The latter has already booked two flights for...
  • russian oil magnate forced to sell to putin loyalist, he says.

    07/31/2007 1:17:41 PM PDT · by ken21 · 6 replies · 386+ views
    new york times ^ | july 31, 2007 | andrew e. kramer
    Mikhail S. Gutseriev, who was once in the tight coterie of Russian billionaires known as oligarchs but has since fallen from favor, accused the government of President Vladimir V. Putin of forcing him out of the company using trumped-up tax claims. The critical letter was the first significant public challenge to Mr. Putin from an influential businessman since the imprisonment four years ago of Mikhail B. Khodorkovsky, the former chairman of Yukos Oil, who is serving an eight-year sentence in Siberia. The development left analysts wondering what the future holds now for Mr. Gutseriev.
  • Mikhail Chernoy: Oleg Deripaska Fails to Portray Me as Russia’s Enemy

    07/17/2007 8:26:23 AM PDT · by IsraelBeach · 300+ views
    Israel News Agency / Google News ^ | July 17, 2007 | Israel News Agency Staff
    Mikhail Chernoy: Oleg Deripaska Fails to Portray Me as Russia’s Enemy (Photo)Chernoy: Rather than paying his debts, Deripaska attempts to discredit me - and fails. By Israel News Agency Staff Jerusalem ----July 17 ..... A fictitious, front organization naming itself the Russian Press Center that, according to political analysts in Moscow, is funded by Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, keeps promoting on the Internet certain libelous "reports" about the Russian oligarchs living in the West – primarily Boris Berezovsky, Michael Cherney (Mikhail Chernoy), and Leonid Nevzlin - preparing an "orange" revolution in Russia, including a change of Putin's regime and their...
  • Russian Energy: Grabbing the Ring

    05/30/2007 11:49:18 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 1 replies · 461+ views
    stratfor.com ^ | May 29, 2007
    To date only two major private energy players have been reincorporated into state structures, and these two provide the blueprint for future reintegrations. The first is Yukos, whose leader -- Mikhail Khodorkovsky -- found out exactly what happens to those who meddle in Russian politics without the Kremlin's express approval, direction and sponsorship: They find themselves tossed in prison, subjects of trumped-up charges, with their wealth confiscated. This is not to say that Khodorkovsky was an innocent man. He was a Russian oligarch, and like all Russian oligarchs he made his fortune by robbing the Russian state blind and then...
  • Russian group's blue-chip bigwigs - Tory grandees among those backing controversial business empire

    05/16/2007 3:32:02 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 208+ views
    timesonline.co.uk ^ | May 13, 2007 | Ben Laurance
    AMONG the ranks of the great and good, few come greater: a retired foreign secretary; a former British ambassador to Moscow; a man credited with having helped to build one of Britain’s most high-profile companies; the former chief executive of a leading European telecoms equipment manufacturer; plus a couple of well-connected Washington insiders. All are the bluest of blue-chip individuals. All provide a magnificent adornment to any corporate letterhead. But all now find themselves tied in with – and de facto representatives of – one of the most controversial business empires on the planet. The company is the Russian conglomerate...
  • The Russian invasion is here: Vladimir Putin wants country's 'champions' to step onto world stage

    05/12/2007 4:46:15 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 6 replies · 674+ views
    theglobeandmail.com ^ | May 12, 2007 | BARRIE MCKENNA
    WASHINGTON -- After his KGB spy days and before becoming President of Russia, Vladimir Putin busied himself by writing a PhD thesis at the St. Petersburg Mining Institute. The seminal, 218-page work - "Strategic Planning of Regional Resources Under the Formation of Market Relations" - still guides his economic thinking today. In it, Mr. Putin floated the idea of nurturing "national champion" companies and harnessing Russia's natural resources to create an economic superpower. No matter that experts say large tracts of Mr. Putin's dissertation were blatantly plagiarized from a KGB translation of a 30-year-old textbook by two University of Pittsburgh...
  • Safe as houses: the KGB-proof mansion

    05/07/2007 11:20:21 AM PDT · by DogByte6RER · 5 replies · 845+ views
    The Sunday Times ^ | May 6, 2007 | Mark Hollingsworth and Jack Grimston
    Safe as houses: the KGB-proof mansion - Oligarch builds Surrey fortress May 6, 2007 by Mark Hollingsworth and Jack Grimston FOR an oligarch nervous about the future, it is the ideal bolthole. A Russian billionaire is spending tens of millions of pounds building a high-security “KGB-proof” mansion in Surrey. Peter Aven, head of the biggest private bank in Russia, is said by locals to have surrounded his 8.5acre property on the Wentworth estate near Virginia Water with “intelligent” electronic fencing and incorporated a bombproof shelter in the design. It also has a two-storey hexagonal guardhouse by the main entrance. The...
  • Western critics: Khodorkovsky stole Yukos fair and square

    04/07/2007 1:26:50 PM PDT · by A. Pole · 23 replies · 937+ views
    The Komisar Scoop ^ | Wednesday, March 28, 2007 | Lucy Komisar
    Russia, through its energy company Rosneft, has started to recover the multibillion dollar oil company Yukos that was stolen from it in the mid-1990s. It is doing so through auctions of the bankrupt company’s assets. And indignant protests continue from westerners. The latest comes from the California state comptroller John Chiang, a Democrat, complaining about “illegal and unethical activities by the Russian government.” Add that to attacks by Sen. John McCain (Republican) and Rep. Tom Lantos (Democrat). The latter wants the State Department to designate Khodorkovsky a political prisoner.* There have also been critical statements from our ethically-challenged administration. Funny...
  • The long, strange career of Jeffrey Sachs

    01/05/2007 6:11:38 PM PST · by A. Pole · 16 replies · 501+ views
    Left Business Observer ^ | August 2005 | Doug Henwood
    Jeffrey Sachs is a complicated guy. His first claim to fame was as the doctor who administered "shock therapy" in Bolivia, Poland, and Russia. Now he's Bono's traveling companion. Bono wrote the intro to Sachs's latest book ("My professor.... In time, his autograph will be worth a lot more than mine"), and Sachs gushes all over Bono in the text ("Bono brilliantly brought the AIDS tragedy to the attention of several key leaders of the religious right..."). [...] UN's Millennium Development Goals (on which he is an advisor to Secretary General Kofi Annan), which were agreed to by 147 heads...
  • The Soviet Union, R.I.P.?

    12/27/2006 7:53:07 AM PST · by A. Pole · 13 replies · 652+ views
    The Nation ^ | December 25, 2006 issue | Stephen F. Cohen
    The most consequential event of the second half of the twentieth century took place surreptitiously fifteen years ago at a secluded hunting lodge in the Belovezh Forest near Minsk. On December 8, 1991, heads of three of the Soviet Union's fifteen republics, led by Boris Yeltsin of Russia, met there to sign documents abolishing that seventy-four-year-old state. Reactions to the end of the Soviet Union were, and remain, profoundly different. For the overwhelming majority of American commentators, it was an unambiguously positive turning point in Russian and world history. As the Soviet breakup quickly became the defining moment in a...
  • New Theories Emerging in "Poisoned Spy" Case

    12/13/2006 6:27:20 PM PST · by genefromjersey · 15 replies · 589+ views
    The Inside Straight ^ | 12/13/06 | vanity
    Little by little, the media is letting go of the "Putin-did-it" theory...because the facts keep getting in the way !