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Articles by Howard Amos


Howard Amos joined The Moscow Times' business desk as a reporter in November 2010 and writes on a variety of topics, including macroeconomics, finance and banking, and energy. He lived in Russia for a year before joining the paper. You can contact him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter at @howardamos.


Russian Parliament Speaker Backs Early Elections

The speaker of the State Duma Ч Russia's lower house of parliament Ч Sergei Naryshkin said Thursday he supports an initiative to bring forward by three months Duma elections scheduled for December 2016.

Foreign Anti-Torture Experts Expelled From Russia

A German expert who was taking part in a seminar organized by a Russian anti-torture NGO has been ordered to leave Russia for violating migration rules, the Interfax news agency reported Thursday.

Russian Prosecutors Visit Zoo, Leave Trail of Death and Destruction

A group of prosecutors and veterinary service officials arrived at closing time at a Crimean zoo called Fairytale and quickly set about firing tranquilizer darts at animals.

Prominent Economist to Leave Russia, Cites Politics

Prominent liberal economist and commentator Konstantin Sonin, who was reportedly squeezed out of a top job at a Russian public university earlier this year, said Wednesday that he will leave the country to take up a teaching post in the United States because of recent political developments.

Polonsky Deported Amid Warming Russia-Cambodian Ties

Colorful Russian businessman Sergei Polonsky was formally charged with fraud by Russian investigators Monday after being deported in flip-flops and shorts from Cambodia.

Russia Steps Up War on Nazi Imagery

On a Saturday evening in February, journalist Polina Petruseva was detained by police at her apartment in the western Russian city of Smolensk, accused of publicly flaunting Nazi imagery.

Boris Nemtsov's Report Counts Hundreds of Russian Dead in Ukraine

Russian opposition leaders published Tuesday a report initiated by slain Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov that details alleged Kremlin military involvement in Ukraine.

Catholic Priest to Appeal Closure of Kirov Baby Box

A Catholic priest in the city of Kirov will file a court appeal against the closure of a baby box by prosecutors, local news website Devyatka reported Tuesday.

Chinese Leader Tops Meager Victory Day Guest List

While Russia's Victory Day celebrations will be some of the most extravagant since the end of the Soviet Union, tensions over Ukraine have left the international guest list significantly shorter than usual.

Moscow Court Finds Glamorous Ex-Defense Ministry Official Guilty in Corruption Case

A Moscow court ruled Wednesday that former Defense Ministry official turned celebrity Evgeniya Vasilyeva was guilty of fraud as one of Russia's most high profile corruption trials entered its final stage.

Putin Raises 'Extremism' Fines for Russian Media Tenfold

President Putin signed legislation Saturday that will increase tenfold the maximum fine that can be levied on Russian news organizations accused of inciting extremism.

Hate Seethes as Russia Marks One Year Since Deadly Odessa Inferno

When protestors gathered Saturday in Moscow to mark one year since 48 people were killed in Odessa during street battles between pro-Russia and pro-Ukraine activists, there was little sadness on display.

Preservationists Warn Over New Status for Soviet Ensemble VDNKh

A Stalinist complex built in the 1930s on a swamp on the outskirts of Moscow to champion the achievements of communism will soon receive a new heritage designation.

Russian Cabbage Prices Triple as Much-Loved Staple Falls Victim to Inflation

The cost of a cabbage in Russia has almost tripled in less than six months.

Russia Steps Back From Brink of Major Pensions Overhaul

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced Thursday that Russia would not scrap pension fund contributions, preserving a key pool of investment capital.

Putin Acts to Spur Russian Farming to Replace Banned Produce

President Putin appointed a regional governor from southern Russia to head the Agriculture Ministry on Wednesday in an apparent bid to galvanize domestic production.

Millions of Russians Edge Toward Poverty as Economic Pressure Mounts

Some experts predict that almost 10 million people — from a population of 143 million — could this year join the 16.1 million people already living below the poverty line.

Analysts Warn Ruble's Surge Could Snap at Any Moment

The Russian currency continued a recent run of strength Thursday, taking the ruble to fresh 2015 highs, as warnings multiplied that the gains were unjustified and could be reversed at any moment.

Ruble Hits New 2015 Highs in World's Best Currency Rebound

The Russian currency strengthened sharply Wednesday, bolstering a recent rally driven by greater confidence in the ruble, easing international tensions over Ukraine and oil price stability.

Will Putin Rescue Greece's Tsipras?

As Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras prepares for talks with President Vladimir Putin during a visit to Moscow beginning on Wednesday.

Battle Over Pension Reform Flares as Russia Hunts for Investment

Top economic officials made an impassioned plea Thursday to preserve the payments employees make to privately managed pension funds as a government battle rages over pension reform.

World Bank Predicts Sanctions Pain, Poverty Rise for Russia

The World Bank predicted Wednesday that Russia's economy will contract by 3.8 percent this year and continue to underperform in the years to come amid the continuing impact of Western sanctions.

Britain's EasyJet Cuts Flights to Russia Amid Aviation Downturn

British budget airline EasyJet halved the number of flights it offers on its Moscow-London route Monday as international carriers scale back their Russian operations amid falling demand.

Russian Tycoon and Activist Fetisov in Poor Health Before Trial

The health of billionaire and political activist Gleb Fetisov, the wealthiest man behind bars in Russia, is deteriorating as he enters his second year in pretrial detention.

Political Pressure Fears as Russia's Central Bank Set to Cut Rates

Fears of political interference with Russia's Central Bank are being stoked by an apparent change of approach as policymakers look set to cut interest rates on Friday.

Russian Tycoon Fridman Should Make U.K. Feel Nervous

A weeklong window for Soviet-born billionaire Mikhail Fridman to persuade the British government to sell him North Sea energy assets closes on Wednesday.

Russia Mulls Lifting European Food Import Ban for Greece

Officials in Moscow are considering exempting Greek fruits from a Russian food import ban imposed on European Union countries last year in retaliation against Western sanctions.

Foreign Russia Investors Warn Over Nemtsov Killing

Businessmen and investors said Monday that the killing of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov by the walls of the Kremlin last week will further worsen Russia's battered investment climate.

Russia's Ruble Rebounds in Biggest Monthly Gain Since 1990s

The Russian ruble has recorded its biggest monthly gain since the early 1990s amid higher oil prices, an easing of the fighting in eastern Ukraine and a less intensive foreign debt repayment schedule.

5 Russian Food Producers Winning From Economic Crisis and Import Ban

Recession, rising inflation and a currency collapse have combined with Western sanctions and the ongoing crisis in Ukraine to cast a pall of gloom over Russian business.