Billionaire Gennady Timchenko is interested in processing garbage in the Moscow region, said Alexander Chuprakov, a deputy prime minister of the region, Vedomosti reported Tuesday.
Ecoline, a company affiliated with Timchenko and Vladimir Lavlentsev, has applied for a permit to start garbage processing in the region, he said.
Timchenko made his fortune in the oil industry through his Swiss-based trader, Gunvor.
More than 10 million tons of waste, or 20 percent of the country's domestic waste, is dumped in the Moscow region annually, Chuprakov said, Vedomosti reported.
Chuprakov said most of the garbage was stored in dumps that caused problems for the environment. The region wants to close 24 out of the 39 existing dumps, Chuprakov said.
Another company interested in garbage processing is MSM Logistika, which is controlled by the son of another prominent businessman, Alexander Chigirinsky. The company has already won a tender worth 25 billion rubles ($803 million) in Moscow.
Sources close to billionaire Roman Abramovich named him as a partner of MSM Logistika in the planned venture, but a spokesman for Abramovich denied it.
The Moscow region's government is planning to build 19 garbage processing plants in the region, Chuprakov said.
Unlike most European countries, Russia lacks the tradition of garbage recycling, and most of the waste is simply burned at garbage-processing facilities.