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Business

Dateline
October 31, 2014 10:38
RIA Novosti/Vitaly Belousov
Russia’s Central Bank lifts key interest rate to 9.5% to revive roiling ruble
The key lender raised its key rate to 9.5 percent, a 1.5 percent jump from the last increase in July. The bank said the decision greatly weighed on external conditions, such as low oil prices, sanctions, and the weakening ruble, changed “significantly.”
AFP Photo/Joe Klamar ​EU: No guarantees for Russia if Ukraine fails to settle gas debt
The EU won’t provide any new funds for Ukraine to pay off its gas debt to Russia, and Moscow has no guarantees should Kiev use agreed funding elsewhere, said the EU Energy Commissioner’s spokeswoman Marlene Holzner.
AFP Photo/Emmanuel Dunand EU lodges WTO complaint against Russia over increasing import tariffs
The European Union has filed a complaint against Russia with the World Trade Organization (WTO) contesting Russia’s heavy import duties on paper products, refrigerators, freezers, and palm oil.
Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller (Reuters/Sergei Karpukhin) Stockholm arbitration to decide on settlement of Ukraine's gas debt – Gazprom head
The payment schedule and the gas price at which the remaining part of Ukraine’s gas debt will be paid, which is on top of the $3.1 billion agreed to be repaid by year end, will be settled at Stockholm arbitration, Gazprom CEO Aleksey Miller has said.
Reuters/Sergei Karpukhin Russia’s 5th largest oil company to return to state ownership
The Russian government has won court approval to seize shares in Bashneft, the country’s fifth largest oil company, after the CEO of the holding company was accused of illicitly privatizing the company’s assets.

Business snaps

Ukraine PM orders new gas pipeline project with Poland 

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk has ordered the development of a new gas pipeline project with Poland, RIA Novosti reported. The project should be realized in 2016. The pipeline will make it possible to get an additional 80 million cubic meters of gas a day, meaning that Ukraine could receive all its natural gas from EU states, Yatsenyuk said.

Ukraine GDP declined by 5.1% in Q3 

Ukraine’s GDP declined by 5.1 percent in the third quarter compared with a year ago, the Wall Street Journal reported. The country’s economy shrank 4.7 percent in the second quarter and by 1.1 percent in the first. Despite the accelerated pace, the decline in the third quarter was narrower than expected, the paper said, citing analysts.

Eurozone inflation edges up slightly in October 

Inflation in the eurozone edged up slightly in October, as a first estimate on Friday from the EU’s statistics office showed consumer prices rose by 0.4 percent, Reuters said. The previous day, data showed inflation in Germany slowing in October to 0.7 percent, its lowest reading since May. The European Central Bank’s policymakers appear divided on the likelihood of deflation in the euro area.

​Ukraine PM orders payment for Russian gas 

The Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has instructed the country’s finance ministry, the National Bank of Ukraine and Naftogaz to start paying off its gas debt to Russia. The country will pay part of the accumulated Russian debt, and prepay for new supplies, RIA reports. Russia, Ukraine, and the European Union agreed a deal on Thursday in Brussels to cover Ukraine’s $4.6 billion gas debt.

Austria, Bulgaria urge earliest implementation of South Stream gas project 

The South Stream gas pipeline construction is a priority for Bulgaria and Austria, Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev and his Austrian counterpart Heinz Fischer said after talks on Thursday, TASS reported. “We actively support the South Stream project as an opportunity to diversify gas supply routes to Southeast and Central Europe,” Plevneliev said, adding a correct dialogue with the newly-appointed European Commission could persuade it to give a green light to resuming its construction.

Bombardier suspends plan for plane-building joint venture in Russia 

Bombardier has put plans for a plane-building joint venture in Russia on hold due to political and economic conditions, Reuters said. The decision is potentially jeopardizing a large Russian order. The Canadian plane and train maker had been in talks with state-owned industrial and defense corporation Rostec to manufacture its Q400 turboprop in Russia, and sell 100 planes in the country. “We’ll see what happens over the next months,” Bombardier Chief Executive Pierre Beaudoin said.

Motorola smartphones to return to Russian market 

Motorola smartphones are expected to return to the Russian market, according to representatives of Lenovo. The move became possible after the Lenovo Group said on Thursday it had completed its $2.91 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility. Smartphones under the Motorola brand have not been officially sold in Russia for several years.

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak, EU Energy Minister Gunther Oettinger, EC President Jose Manuel Barosso and Vice President Miros Sefkovic, and Ukrainan Energy Minister Yuri in Brussels on October 30, 2014 (AFP Photo / Emmanuel Dunand)
Russia, Ukraine agree on gas supplies until March 2015
Russia, Ukraine, and the European Commission have signed an agreement on gas supply and transit conditions until March 2015 during talks in Brussels.
Signing of the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement by more than 80 countries on October 29, 2014 in Berlin, as part of the Berlin Tax Conference. (AFP Photo)
51 countries declare banking secrecy ‘obsolete’, sign pact in Berlin
Finance ministers from over 51 countries signed an agreement in a step closer to ending the dark financial underworld of tax-evasion and money-laundering. Another 30 countries pledged to join by 2018.
Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon Lenovo buys Motorola becoming world’s third largest smartphone producer
Chinese giant PC producer Lenovo has completed the $2.9 billion acquisition of the handset unit in the iconic mobile maker Motorola Mobility, fortifying its positions in the US and other developed markets.
AFP Photo/Johannes Eisele Apple in talks to bring iPhone to Iran
Apple is in early stage talks with Iranian distributors about entering the country’s market after the US began to loosen sanctions on exports to Iran. A sign of warming relations with Teheran is seen after a 35 freeze that began in 1979.
AFP Photo/Yuri Kadobnov Gazprom leaves gas talks in Brussels
Gazprom, Russia's largest gas producer, has left talks in Brussels and returned to Moscow, insisting that the EU and Ukraine must agree on the financials first.
Reuters/Luke MacGregor Billionaires in the world double since global crisis - Oxfam
The number of billionaires in the world has more than doubled to 1,646 since the financial crisis of 2009, with inequality reaching new extremes, according to a new Oxfam report on inequality.
Russia's Energy Minister Alexander Novak (AFP Photo/Kirill Kudryavtsev) Basic parameters of gas deal agreed – Energy Minister
Ukraine and Russia have agreed on the framework conditions for supplying gas in EU-brokered talks on Wednesday, Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak said. But to resume gas deliveries Russia needs a clear payment plan from Ukraine, the minister said.
AFP Photo/Viktor Drachev China expected to invest $1bn in Russian solar energy
China’s Solar Systems may become the largest investor in the Russian solar power industry. The company plans to construct a plant for the production of solar panels in Russia’s Tatarstan Republic next year.
Reuters/Lukas Barth Smart factories in Germany the answer to growth
As smartphones have revolutionized personal communication, German industry is looking to smart factories to improve the country’s industrial output. Leading the charge is conglomerate Siemens, and a facility in the small town of Amberg.

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