Articles by Khristina Narizhnaya



Renovations Key for Luxe Hotels to Compete

When the Ararat Park Hyatt opened in Moscow 10 years ago, it was one of a very small group of luxury hotels in Moscow. Facing ever-increasing competition from newly opened hotels, however, the international hospitality giant needed to take its service up a notch.

As Business Becomes More Civil, So Do Its State Relations

"Roofs" with criminal connections or extravagant lifestyles, common in the 1990s, are being replaced by worldly technocrats and former government officials.

4 Dead, 49 Missing After Far East Oil Rig Sinks

At least four people died when the floating Kolskaya oil rig overturned and sank with 67 people on board in the stormy Sea of Okhotsk as it was being towed to shore, 200 kilometers off Sakhalin Island.

Light Will Shine on State Procurement

As Russia awaits the World Trade Organization's final approval in Geneva on Friday, compliance with obligations to make government procurement more transparent are under way.

Business Group Sees Need for New Party

Kaliningrad businessman Andrei Demchuk was found on the bank of a lake a little over a year ago, bound and shot dead. The gun was nearby as well as documents strewn inside and outside his BMW X5.

Scorecard for Regional Investment

Russia's regions are in a heated competition to see which can attract more investment dollars, from both local and foreign businesses.

Corruption Drops Slightly In '11

Russia's reputation for graft has improved, jumping 11 spots in watchdog Transparency International's annual corruption perception index of countries around the world.

Bashkortostan Makes Up Lost Time

After years of closing the republic to outsiders, attracting foreign investment is now a priority for the Bashkortostan government, forced for the first time to grapple with a dwindling budget.

Investment Estimated at $36Bln

Foreign direct investment in Russia reached $36 billion in the first 10 months of the year, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said Monday during a meeting of the government's commission on foreign investment, citing the Central Bank.

Draft Law Might Add to Foreigners' Taxes

On top of relocation fees and higher salaries, companies could face insurance fees for foreign workers starting next year. The proposal would add a 10 percent fee for those earning more than 512,000 rubles ($16,600) per year.

Arms Upgrade Begins With Recycling

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered the military-industrial complex to form a special commission to oversee government contracts and spending on defense projects.

'Reset' With U.S. Continues at APEC

The "reset" between Russia and the United States appeared to be in full force at the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference, held in held in Hawaii's capital, Honolulu, over the weekend.

Syktyvkar

If you've lived in Russia and have scribbled anything on paper, chances are you've left your mark on a Syktyvkar product. Perhaps you are in a job that doesn't require you to write on paper. But you have, at some point, probably calculated a restaurant tip on a napkin. Then you, too, have appreciated Syktyvkar's bounty.

Party Faces Social-Funding Quandary

Recent suggestions by United Russia members on dealing with illegal migrant labor and the pension fund deficit have been regarded as unrealistic, or even absurd.

Microsoft Ups Startup Support

Russian startups have good news to look forward to. The Skolkovo Fund and global software giant Microsoft will increase support for innovative projects, Microsoft operational director Kevin Turner and Skolkovo president Viktor Vekselberg announced Wednesday.

Human Trafficking Increasing at Home

Lax laws and poor enforcement make Russia a popular source for people forced into slave labor and prostitution, a leading international expert on human trafficking said Tuesday.

Russia Rises in Bribery Score, Still Last

Russian businessmen are most likely to give bribes in commercial deals abroad, compared with businessmen from other large economies, according to the just-released Transparency International bribe payers index.

Expats Growing in Number as Profile Evolves

When Missouri native Brad Hicks, 40, found out his employer, international manufacturing and technology company Emerson, had an opening in Moscow, he jumped at the chance.

Russia, CIS Will Grow, EBRD Says

Russia and CIS economies will continue to grow amid a slowdown in Eastern Europe brought on by the euro-zone crisis, according to a report from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development released Monday.

Khodorkovsky May Be Investigated for Money Laundering

Jailed former Yukos CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky may be investigated for money laundering, a German news report said. A money-laundering case against Khodorkovsky was opened in Germany several months ago, Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported Saturday.

Ufa

Ufa is best seen from the window of a landing airplane in the early fall. The concrete center is surrounded by multicolored cottage roofs sprinkled on rolling hills, covered in yellow, green, orange and red trees, cut by rivers and lakes as still as glass.

Bashkortostan Farmer Pioneers High-Tech Dairy

Artur Nurgaliyev pointed to a group of black-and-white spotted cows feeding out of a trough on his farm near Ufa, the capital of the Bashkortostan republic.

Victoria's Secret Counting On Women's Rubles

U.S. chain Victoria's Secret is poised to take a portion of the $11.2 billion lingerie and cosmetics market, celebrating its arrival in Russia with a store opening in a Mega Mall on the outskirts of southwestern Moscow.

Q&A: How Coca-Cola Chief Copes With Pressure

The hectic pace of business in Moscow and day-to-day management stress is pressure enough, but when Coca-Cola announced earlier this week that it plans to pump an additional $3 billion into Russia, local head Zoran Vucinic was unfazed.

Coke Adds $120M to Its Life in Russia

Soft-drink giant Coca-Cola opened a $120 million factory in Rostov-on-Don on Monday designed to serve the 2014 Sochi Olympics. The new facility is the first step in Coca-Cola's new $3 billion Russian investment program over the next five years.

Expat Golf League Blends Business and Pleasure

Alexander Smirnov, clad in yellow pants and a checkered blue and red sweater, looked up angrily as he swung his golf club. A couple was talking quietly nearby in the lush green grass at a golf course in the Le Meridien Moscow Country Club.

Russians Spend More, Travel Independently

Russian tourists took a record 60 million trips abroad in the first half of this year, spending a record amount of money via their credit cards, according to tourism and credit card companies.

High Court Pitches In to Explain Tax Rules

Plans to lower Russia's deficit are in the works, even though it is already lower than the 2.7 percent of gross national product predicted earlier this year.

Up to a Third of Consumer Items Fake

Knockoff Chinese Jin Ling cigarettes from Kaliningrad, Italian Asti wines actually made in the CIS and Bavarian car parts made in Podolsk imply a certain geographic schizophrenia for Russian consumers. But the harsh reality is a market for counterfeit goods worth between $3 billion and $6 billion per year.

Q&A: Singapore's Tay Sees Mutual Lessons in Business With Russia

At first glance, Russia and Singapore could not be more different. One is huge and the other tiny, one is mostly rural and undeveloped while the other has barely any free land. But the countries have been growing closer.