“Gazprom and the government have long had a close relationship, but the revolving door between them is spinning especially fast this year: Medvedev, 42, replaces Putin as president; Putin becomes prime minister, replacing Viktor Zubkov; and Zubkov is expected to take Medvedev’s place as Gazprom’s chairman at a general shareholders meeting in June”, the International Herald Tribune reports.
With Vladimir Putin as Russias prime minister, the federal ministries are bolstered with a number of new powers, while agencies and services lose independence. Among the losers is the State Committee of Fisheries.
The Murmansk regional administration has got 60 additional powers and has hired 625 new people. Now several regional ministries will be established as part of a major administrative restructuring plan.
It would be in the West’s interest to include Russia in its political, economic and security plans, researcher Michael Emerson from the Centre for European Policy Studies writes in a new paper. He believes the next EU-Russia treaty should include emphasis on visa-free travel, free trade in goods and services, as well as rules relating to energy investments
Acting city Mayor of Arkhangelsk Viktor Pavlenko has appointed Yuri Shaulov as acting Vice Mayor for construction. The appointment is based on a recommendation from regional Governor Ilya Mikhalchuk. Yuri Shaulov comes from a post in the Russian presidential administration.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin yesterday requested parliament to approve the Russian Federation’s biggest ever investment programme. In the period 2010-2015, Russia plans to the invest 13 trillion RUB (550 billion USD) in infrastructure development all over the country.
More than 20 contributions were submitted in a competition on the new official hymn of Murmansk Oblast. The winning contribution is named Be Proud, Murmansk Oblast!, and is composed by a civil servant in the regional administration.
After eighteen months of standstill, EU and Russia are again ready for talks on a new partnership and cooperation agreement. EU representatives yesterday finally agreed on the necessary negotiating positions.
Denmarks Foreign Minister Per Stig Møller this week says he expects countries around the North Pole to respect international laws when settling territorial claims in the Arctic. Next week the Arctic costal states meet at Greenland to discuss the rules that apply to the Arctic Ocean.