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What the Papers Say, Apr. 2, 2014

Kommersant


1. Oleg Rubnikovich article headlined "Careerism as part of organized crime group" provides an update on a criminal investigation against four high-ranking staff members of the economic crime and corruption department of the Interior Ministry who are suspected of inciting an FSB official to take a bribe. The suspects might face charges of acting as an organized crime group; p 1 (639 words).


2. Vadim Visloguzov article called "Finance Ministry in hurry to set rates" says the Finance Ministry has drawn up a road map for Crimea's switch to the Russian taxation system. The author notes that the ministry is not introducing any tax incentives yet; pp 1-2 (768 words).


3. Kristina Naumova and Yegor Popov article called "Ford follows path of Avtovaz" reports that the Ford factory in Vsevolzhsk is laying off 35 percent of its staff, citing a drop in demand and the devaluation of the ruble; pp 1, 10 (642 words).


4. Yekaterina Gerashchenko and Alexandera Mertsalova article titled "Distribution of stadiums without competition" says the government has awarded contracts worth an equivalent of $2.7 billion for the construction of stadiums to companies affiliated with tycoons Gennady Timchenko, Dmitry Pumpyansky, Ravil Ziganshin and the Agalarovs without any tender procedures; pp 1, 10 (543 words).


5. Viktor Khamrayev and Musa Muradov article headlined "Kabarda-Balkaria to opt out of direct popular elections of republic head" reports that the parliament of the republic of Kabardino-Balkaria is about to pass a bill abolishing direct elections of the regional head; p 2 (478 words).


6. Tatyana Grishina interview with deputy head of the Federal Tax Service Dmitry Grigorenko called "Local colleagues have a number of unconventional functions" on how Crimea is being integrated into the Russian taxation system; p 2 (396 words).


7. Petr Netreba article headlined "Entire Russia will outpace its own development" looks at a bill that has been drafted by the Economic Development Ministry that contains a new interpretation of the term "zones of advanced economic development" and would entitle all regions of Russia to this status, without giving them any tax concessions ; p 2 (486 words).


8. Andrei Pertsev article called "Old manifesto for new division" doubts that the manifesto used by deputy State Duma speaker Ivan Melnikov will help the Communist Party gain enough votes in the City Duma election in September; p 2 (573 words).


9. Maxim Ivanov and Anna Pushkarskaya article headlined "Russia threatens to withdraw from PACE control" says the Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) is considering the option of acting preventively and withdrawing from the organization before it votes in favor of stripping the delegation of its mandate over the disruption of Ukraine's territorial integrity; p 3 (649 words).


10. Lenur Yunusov et al. article entitled "Crimean Tatars strengthen regional government" says the Crimean Tatar assembly, or Majlis, has delegated its two representatives to the Crimean government, but has not given up the idea of holding an ethnic referendum on the status of the peninsula; p 3 (640 words).


11. Grigory Tumanov article headlined "Non-commercialization of Crimea" reports that most Ukrainian non-profit organizations have either withdrawn from Crimea or have closed down altogether. It might be hard to form a local public chamber unless Russian NGOs and public associations open branches in Crimea soon; p 3 (717 words).


12. Igor Lesovskikh article called "Surgut Without Drugs gets court prospects" gives details of a criminal case against the head of the Surgut Without Drugs rehab and a member of his staff who are facing charges of depriving 13 patients of their freedom illegally; p 4 (516 words).


13. Alexander Voronov article headlined "Kremlin moves clock hands" forecasts that daylight saving time might be re-introduced in Russia on Oct. 26, 2014. It was abolished in 2011 by then-President Dmitry Medvedev, and the government is yet to voice its stance on the bill that would reinstate it; p 5 (453 words).


14. Maria Yefimova article titled "NATO moves to containment" reports from a meeting of the foreign ministers of the NATO member states that opened on Apr. 1 in Brussels; says the alliance hopes to avoid military confrontation with Russia and is unlikely to offer any tangible support to Ukraine; p 6 (581 words).


15. Nina Sokolova article called "Vitaly Klitschko to stand against three" weighs the chances of Vitali Klitschko and three other contenders of winning the May 25 mayoral election in Kiev; p 6 (600 words).


16. Yelena Chernenko article called "No noteworthy journalists found in West" says there are no journalists among the people blacklisted by Russia in retaliation for the West's lists of Russian citizens declared persona non grata over the Ukraine crisis; p 6 (428 words).


17. Sergei Strokan article headlined "Afghanistan saying goodbye to Karzai" previews the presidential election in Afghanistan due to take place on Apr. 5 ; p 6 (573 words).


18. Sergei Sobolev and Pavel Belavin article titled "Europa Plus to be enhanced with Dorozhnoye" says the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service has authorized the takeover by the European Media Group of Dorozhnoye Radio (Road Radio), the second most popular FM station in the country; p 7 (567 words).


19. Svetlana Dementyeva article called "Banks face FATCA" says there has been no progress in the signing of Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) inter-governmental agreement between Russia and the U.S., so Russian banks will each have to find a way to exchange information with U.S. tax services; p 8 (770 words).


20. Roman Rozhkov and Vladimir Lavitsky article headlined "Pavel Durov disentangles network" looks at founder Pavel Durov's resignation from the post of CEO of the social network Vkontakte; p 8 (665 words).


21. Yelizaveta Kuznetsova article called "Aeroflot gives Crimea more flights and prices" says Aeroflot is going to perform up to 77 flights a week to Simferopol and set the price of tickets at 7,000 rubles which is probably below cost; p 10 (475 words).


Vedomosti


1. Margarita Papchenkova and Maxim Tovkaylo article called "Dividend a la Russe" says state-owned companies might be allowed to pay out only 25 percent of their profits as dividends to help them cope through the economic slowdown; pp 1, 5 (550 words).


2. Editorial headlined "Still movable feast" suggests that the government could take advantage of Russians being overjoyed at the annexation of Crimea and implement unpleasant economic and structural reforms or at least take steps to address burning economic issues; pp 1, 6 (350 words).


3. Alexei Nikolsky and Polina Khimshiashvili article called "Concentration without grouping" analyses the alleged build-up of Russian troops along the border with Ukraine, quotes an expert as saying that whatever the deployment might have been, it was prepared for an offensive; p 2 (600 words).


4. Anastasia Kornya article titled "House arrest not the reason" says Alexei Navalny's blog has been blocked by the telecommunications watchdog not because he is under house arrest, but because he voiced his support for unauthorized protests; p 3 (400 words).


5. Liliya Biryukova and Margarita Papchenkova article called "Front counts other people's debts" quotes a report by the All-Russia People's Front indicating that regions that are already heavily in debt continue to hold tenders for more loans; p 3 (350 words)


6. Olga Kuvshinova article titled "Cold spell in economy" reports the highlights of a conference hosted by the Higher School of Economics that boiled down to calls for economic liberalization and reforms; p 4 (630 words).


7. Olga Kuvshinova article headlined "To play on devaluation" points to falling production, energy consumption and employment and growing costs of production as the national economy is stagnating; p 4 (400 words).


8. Editorial called "Money-health-money" summarizes the findings of a study by the Higher School of Economics that shows that 55 percent of Russians are prepared to pay for health care services; p 6 (350 words).


9. Dmitry Kazmin column headlined "Figure of the week: 30 percent" praises the Finance Ministry for taking steps to protect Russian banks from sanctions in the case of non-compliance with FATCA because of the U.S. quietly sabotaging the signing of an interstate agreement on exchange of information about tax payers; p 7 (350 words).


10. Andrei Kolesnikov op-ed called "'Fifth column', second rate" condemns the Russian authorities and the media for labeling the current Ukrainian leadership Banderites and waging a witch-hunt and for the lack of a development policy for the country; p 7 (430 words).


11. Anastasia Golitsyna article headlined "Durov out of contact" looks at the causes of Pavel Durov's resignation from the post of CEO of Vkontakte ; pp 10, 18 (800 words)


12. Vladimir Shtanov and Petr Tretyakov article called "Ford Sollers rides after AvtoVAZ" says the Ford factory in Vsevolzhsk is to lay off 700 workers and to temporarily halt production between Apr.7-15, Apr. 21 and June 8. Other car makers that have assembly facilities in Russia are not going to follow suit yet; p 11 (650 words).


13. Alina Fadeyeva article titled "Uralkali believes in India" reports that potash fertilizer company Uralkali is selling 800,000 tons of potash to India for $322 per ton. Experts expect prices in the market to grow; p 12 (370 words).


14. Galina Starinskaya article called "Petrol for Crimea" says that LUKoil, Gazprom and Rosneft will be able to fully meet the demand for petrol in Crimea; p 12 (530 words).


15. Mikhail Serov article titled "Ukraine keeps discount for fleet" points out that Ukraine is now buying Russian gas at a discount of $100 that it secured thanks to signing an agreement in 2010 on the stationing of the Black Sea Fleet in Crimea after 2017; p 12 (380 words).


16. Yelizaveta Sergina, Mikhail Overchenko article "To Crimea for frequencies" says the Russian media and telecommunications watchdog Roskomnadzor has started an audit of available frequencies in Crimea; p 16 (450 words).


17. Alexei Rozhkov et al. article called "Who will build stadiums" looks at the companies that have been selected as contractors for building stadiums for the 2018 FIFA World Cup; p 18 (430 words).


Nezavisimaya Gazeta


1. Yury Paniyev article headlined "Russia might find NATO bases in its neighborhood" concludes that NATO is going to stick to its expansion plans amid the crisis over Ukraine and scale down its cooperation with Russia, or at least that was the mood at the Apr. 1meeting of the foreign ministers of the NATO member states in Brussels; pp 1, 8 (873 words).


2. Vladimir Mukhin article called "Buffer mini-states to emerge in Central Asia" reports from a meeting of the defense ministries of the SCO member states in Hujand, Tajikistan; notes that that the meeting is a sign that the Central Asian countries and China are determined to maintain cooperation with Russia; pp 1, 2 (891 words).


3. Alexei Gorbachev article headlined "President and prime minister report income" says top-ranking officials and lawmakers have filed their income statements, which will be made public in a month. Experts say, though, that Russians doubt the validity of the income declarations, especially after former Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, who faced corruption charges, was granted amnesty; pp 1, 3 (742 words).


4. Igor Naumov article headlined "Gazprom pushes Ukraine to Europe" views how a hike in the gas price for Ukraine as of Apr. 1 has fueled fears of a new "gas war" between Russia and Ukraine that is forcing Europe to diversify its sources of gas supply; pp 1, 4 (985 words).


5. Andrei Serenko article titled "Volgograd start of ruling party" looks ahead at the visit of Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to Volgograd on Apr. 4 that will mark the start of the United Russia party's campaign in the local government elections; pp 1, 6 (680 words).


6. Tatyana Ivzhenko article headlined "Rada puts an end to revolutionary lawlessness" reports on a standoff between the ultranationalist Right Sector movement and the interim Ukrainian authorities; pp 1, 7 (1,397 words).


7. Editorial headlined "Territory for hunting Satana" alleges that the U.S. leadership is interested in finding common ground with Russia on Ukraine because without Russian orders the Ukrainian defense industry will go bankrupt and its nuclear technologies will become available to China or anyone else for that matter; p 2 (508 words).


8. Alexei Fenenko op-ed headlined "Carte Blanche. Slovak challenge" suggests that Russia should pay more attention to its relations with Hungary, Romania and Slovakia amid deteriorating ties with Germany; p 3 (629 words).


9. Ivan Rodin article called "Hot screw trend" reviews a bill on tougher penalties for holding unauthorized rallies; says it is likely to be opposed by the communists, but at least some of the initiatives "tightening the screws" even more will be adopted; p 3 (732 words).


10. Yekaterina Trifonova article "Masterclass for Crimean parliament" previews a visit of Russian State Duma members to Crimea where they will hold workshops for local legislators; p 3 (517 words).


11. Anastasia Bashkatova article called "Central Bank stands up for Crimean depositors" says now that the Central Bank has insured the deposits of bank customers in Crimea, Ukrainian "patriotically minded" bankers may decide to withhold the money; p 4 (770 words).


12. Alina Terekhova article headlined "Finance Ministry ready to stop paying pensions to some pensioners" casts doubt on the arguments of Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, who calls for increasing the age of retirement or else there will be no money in the Pension Fund to provide for everyone; p 4 (908 words).


13. Kirill Rodionov article called "Peculiarities of visa regime" spells out his ideas with regard to a reform of Russia's migration policy; p 5 (2,084 words).


14. Anton Khodasevich article titled "Unexpected heirloom comes upon Minsk" says Belarus might end up getting Russian defense contracts as economic cooperation with Ukraine has been canceled; p 7 (530 words).


15. Vladimir Skosyrev article headlined "China extracts gas from South China Sea" considers the multifaceted implications of China-Canada's Liwan offshore project that has started flowing gas; p 8 (602 words).


16. Roman Silantyev article headlined "Ummah increases with Crimea" says the Muslim organizations in Crimea will have to integrate into the Russian system of religious communities; p 4 (1,100 words).


Izvestia


1. Alexandra Bayazitova and Lyudmila Podobedova article headlined "They will help businesses with financial guarantees" says the government has worked out measures in case sanctions are imposed on Russian companies; pp 1, 4 (800 words).


2. Alexander Yunashev article headlined "Crimean officials get rid of shares in companies and of accounts" says the officials in the territory absorbed by Russia will be barred from having foreign bank accounts; pp 1, 4 (300 words).


3. Svetlana Subbotina article headlined "United Russia in the peninsula to be headed by Vladimir Konstantinov" says a regional branch of the ruling party is being created in Crimea; pp 1-2 (500 words).


4. Natalya Bashlykova article headlined "Alexei Chaly ready to run for Sevastopol governor" says Chaly has been approved as interim governor of the city of Sevastopol; p 2 (700 words).


5. Sergei Podosenov article headlined "Russian citizens' attitude towards U.S. and EU worsens" cites a poll that says 61 percent of Russians oppose the U.S. and 53 percent oppose the EU; p 2 (700 words).


6. Alexandra Yermakova article headlined "Aeroflot lowers costs of tickets to Crimea" says the cheapest flight tickets from Moscow to Simferopol will now cost around 7,500 rubles ($215) ; p 5 (600 words).


7. Irina Nenasheva article headlined "Pirate Party sues Roskomnadzor over Navalny's blog" says one of the Pirate Party leaders Pavel Rassudov has sued the communications watchdog for blocking the pages of opposition politician Alexei Navalny and other websites; p 5 (200 words).


8. Vitaly Ageyev article headlined "Russia, Ukraine start dividing Crimean sky" says the International Civil Aviation Organization is helping Russia and Ukraine divide control over the Crimean and Black Sea airspace; p 5 (800 words).


9. Konstantin Volkov article headlined "Tokyo may become serious player in arms market" features Russian experts' comments on Japan's arms and military technology exports; p 8 (400 words).


10. Darya Tsoy article headlined "'Ukraine blocks Russians living in Dnestr region" is an interview with the Dnestr region's Minister of Foreign Affairs Nina Shtanski on Ukraine closing its border with the region; p 8 (700 words).


11. Maxim Kononenko opinion headlined "Snipers' revolution 2" casts doubt on photos of the alleged law-enforcement snipers who supposedly fired at protesters during the uprising in Ukraine. The photos were published by The Daily Beast; p 9 (600 words).


12. Vadim Shtepa opinion headlined "Europe of hundred flags or E.U.S.S.R.?" criticizes the European Union for paying little attention to the interests of its regions; p 9 (700 words).


Rossiiskaya Gazeta


1. Tatyana Zykova article headlined "April theses of Anton Siluanov" reviews Finance Minister Anton Siluanov's views on the economic crisis in Russia; p 3 (800 words).


2. Article by head of the State Duma committee on labor and social policy Andrei Isayev headlined "Social development of Crimea and Sevastopol" sets out priorities in introducing welfare provisions in Crimea and Sevastopol; says that in March Russia paid off Ukraine's debts to Crimean pensioners; p 3 (502 words).


3. Yury Gavrilov article headlined "Threats assessed" contains excerpts from what Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu said at a meeting of the defense ministries of the SCO member states in Hujand, Tajikistan; 5 (419 words).


4. Sergei Ptichkin article headlined "Yars to become invisible" says mobile missile systems will be defended from foreign surveillance by engineering support and disguise machines; p 5 (500 words).


5. Yury Politov article titled "Who is the last in line to Kingdom" raises the issue of long queues at UK visa application centers; p 6 (541 words).


6. Fedor Lukyanov op-ed headlined "Europe and federalization" insists that federalization is probably the only solution for Ukraine and Moldova that are both facing threats to their territorial integrity; p 8 (683 words).


7. Anna Fedyakina article headlined "They have no choice" looks at the income statements of the candidates for Ukrainian president and says that none of them is capable "of uniting the country"; p 9 (649 words).


Moskovsky Komsomolets


1. Natalya Rozhkova article headlined "Give us a million!" says the State Duma may toughen punishments for organizers of unauthorized rallies; pp 1-2 (400 words).


2. Mikhail Rostovsky opinion headlined "Moscow plays for two" describes how Russia is defending its interests in Ukraine; pp 1, 3 (400 words).


3. Leonid Berres article headlined "Crimea — our Singapore" says business rights ombudsman Boris Titov has suggested that tax exemptions should be introduced in Crimea; p 3 (100 words).


4. Nikolai Vardul opinion headlined "U.S. serve sanctions under different sauces" focuses on the effects of U.S. sanctions on Russian banks; p 5 (300 words).


5. Mikhail Zubov article headlined "Tauric Putin" features Russian experts' comments on Putin's further policies on Crimea; p 5 (1,000 words).


RBK Daily


1. Maria Gordeyeva article headlined "Here we are" says that "serious changes in the economic situation in Russia" made Ford car manufacturer curtail down its production in Russia and cut the number of employees; pp 1, 7 (600 words).


2. Yevgeny Krasikov article headlined "Vkontakte without founding father" looks into the resignation of Pavel Durov from the post of Vkontakte CEO; pp 1, 10 (500 words).


3. Ivan Petrov and Vladimir Pavlov article headlined "NATO goes East" says that NATO's response to Russia's actions in Ukraine and Crimea could be the deployment of additional military units in the countries of Eastern Europe and the Baltic states; p 2 (700 words).


4. Yelena Malysheva article headlined "Uncertainty for one, two or three years" analyzes the recent open lecture of Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, who noted the need to toughen pension reform and raise the retirement age; p 4 (500 words).


5. Dmitry Nikitin and Alexandra Yevdokimova article headlined "Miller not joking" says that the price of Russian gas for Ukraine has gone up by 43.6 percent as of April; p 7 (800 words).


Noviye Izvestia


1. Yana Stadilnaya article headlined "Release of Dnepr'" comments on the shooting that took place in the Dnepr Hotel in Kiev, which served as headquarters for the Right Sector right-wing nationalist group; p 2 (350 words).


2. Vitaly Solovetsky article headlined "Five years behind bars" says parliamentarians suggest that punishment for repeated violations of the law during mass events should be toughened and that the maximum penalty should be five years in a penal colony; p 2 (400 words).


3. Sergei Putilov article headlined "Sitting on a pipe" predicts a new "gas war" between Russia and Ukraine, saying that the price on the Russian gas could go up by 200 percent for Ukraine in 2014; p 3 (500 words).


Komsomolskaya Pravda


1. Mikhail Ozerov article headlined "Crimea's echo: rush from Piccalilli until they catch you" says that due to the Western sanctions imposed on Russia, some Russian oligarchs have decided to leave London. Some fear they would be included on the blacklist, others think their job contracts will not be prolonged in Britain; pp 1, 8 (1000 words).


2. Viktor Baranets article headlined "Russian troops led away from Ukrainian borders" says Western talks about Russia's alleged intention to invade Ukraine is simple "bluff"; p 5 (300 words).


3. Alexander Kots and Dmitry Steshin article headlined "Right Sector ordered to disarm" features a report on the recent developments around the Ukrainian Right Sector nationalist movement; p 6 (400 words).


4. Yelena Suprycheva interview with Darth Vader, the most eccentric candidate in the Ukrainian presidential election; p 7 (600 words).


Novaya Gazeta


1. Kirill Rogov feature headlined "Historic rivers' twists" says that the Ukrainian revolution is a great loss of President Putin on the arena of geopolitical influence; p 9 (700 words).


Krasnaya Zvezda


1. Alexander Alexanderov article headlined "Power divided in Kiev" looks into the recent Ukrainian events, reports on a fight between "chocolate billionaire" Petro Poroshenko and "gas princess" Yulia Tymoshenko; p 3 (1,000 words).


Argumenty i Fakty


1. Vladimir Polupanov interview with prominent journalist Vladimir Pozner; p 3 (1,200 words).


2. Vyacheslav Kostikov article headlined "Lost illusions: who is damaged by information wars" blames U.S. "cynical" policy towards Ukraine, saying that Ukraine is just another playing card in U.S. game with Europe; p 6 (1,100 words).


BBC Monitoring / © BBC

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