Russia fires warnings shots across the bows of UK warship off the Crimea shores

bne IntelliNews June 23, 2021

In the first exchange of fire since the end of the Cold War, a Russian ship fired warning shots across the bows of a UK naval ship off the coast of Crimea on June 23.

Fix Price: the bricks and mortar retail disruptor

Ben Aris in Berlin June 23, 2021

The stagnation of real incomes in Russia is driving the business of Fix Price, the leading hard discounter that is now one of the fastest growing retail businesses in the world.

DATACRUNCH: Central banks hike rates in the fight against inflation

Ben Aris in Berlin June 22, 2021

The economies of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) are bouncing back from the pandemic recession but this will also stimulate inflation, posing a dilemma for central banks.

Gazprom confesses to several big methane leaks this year

bne IntelliNews June 21, 2021

Russia’s gas giant Gazprom has admitted to several large methane leaks this year, one of the most environmentally harmful gases, the company said over the weekend.

Otto Group’s myToys shuts downs in Russia after 10 years of activity

East West Digital News in Moscow June 21, 2021

myToys, an online retailer of children’s goods owned by Otto Group, ceased its activity earlier this month in Russia after more than 10 years of operations.

VTB Capital invests $75mn in Russian car-sharing major Delimobil

East West Digital News in Moscow June 21, 2021

VTB Capital, a division of the state bank VTB, is in the process of acquiring a 15% stake in the Delimobil car-sharing service.

Putin unveils a new pre-election spending boost

Ben Aris in Berlin June 21, 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin hopes to give the flagging support for the ruling United Russia party a pre-election boost by unveiling another big spending package on the social sphere and infrastructure ahead of the September 19 Duma elections.

Ukraine imposes sanctions against oligarch Dmitry Firtash for trading titanium with Russia

Ben Aris in Berlin June 20, 2021

The government in Ukraine has imposed sanctions on oligarch Dmytro Firtash for selling titanium to Russian defence sector enterprises at a time when Ukraine was de facto at war with its north-eastern neighbour.

EU reaches deal on sectoral Belarus economic sanctions

Ben Aris in Berlin June 20, 2021

The European Union has agreed on a broad package of sanctions on Belarus that target the latter's key sectors, including sanctions on the financial sector, and overcoming objections from Austria.

Confusion over the Biden administration's commitment to military support for Ukraine

Ben Aris June 20, 2021

There is a confusion over the commitment of the Biden administration to military support for Ukraine after reports appeared over the weekend that a $100mn military aid package that includes lethal weapons had been suspended. attracts $26mn from major Russian, Austrian and Swedish investors

East West Digital News in Moscow June 20, 2021

In late May Russian insuretech leader BestDoctor closed a $26mn round with an impressive investor consortium. The money was brought in by Winter Capital, a Moscow-based international fund backed, in particular, by billionaire Vladimir Potanin.

Tinkoff offers virtual phone secretary to all Russian mobile phone users

East West Digital News in Moscow June 20, 2021

In early June Tinkoff, the Russian digital banking giant, announced the beta version of its free voice assistant ‘Oleg,’ making it available to all mobile users in Russia.

Russian travel segment is recovering fast from the pandemic

East West Digital News in Moscow June 20, 2021

According to, Russian travellers booked 15% more tickets through its air ticket online booking platform than in the pre-COVID year of 2019.

ECFR: Biden meets Putin: America, Russia, and the return of diplomacy

Kadri Liik an ECFR Senior Policy Fellow June 19, 2021

Joe Biden is the fifth American president to hold a bilateral summit with Vladimir Putin. But he is likely the first post-Cold War US president to have a realistic understanding of what Russia is and what it wants.

Austria blocking EU sanctions on Belarus banks to protect its business interests

bne IntelIiNews June 19, 2021

Austria has blocked proposed sanctions on bank loans to Belarus to protect a branch of Raiffeisen International that has been operating in Minsk for years.

Russian stocks Geneva summit rally comes to an end after 36 weeks of straight inflows

bne IntelliNews June 18, 2021

A pre-Geneva summit rally saw a record 36 weeks straight of inflows that came to an end on June 17.

Moscow introduces mandatory coronavirus vaccination

Ben Aris in Berlin June 17, 2021

In what will be the most unpopular move since the state increased retirement ages, Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin announced a mandatory vaccination scheme on June 16. The mayor’s decision comes as infection rates in the Russian capital soar.

Russian government tweaks 50% dividend payout rule for state companies

bne IntelliNews June 17, 2021

Russia's Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin signed a new order on dividend payments for state companies, which brings clarifications to adjusted net income calculations for paying at least 50% of IFRS net profit, Izvestia reports.

Putin and Biden meet in Geneva for "constructive" talks

bne IntelliNews June 17, 2021

Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden held three hours of “constructive” talks in Geneva, although few details were released.