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David Parker

BBC World Service

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Moscow- The Russian News Agency, TASS, reports economists predict the current slump in Russian crude oil prices to continue.  Listeners will recall the recent fire at Lukoil's largest refinery caused regional shortages and austerity measures, reducing revenues. More recent overproduction has glutted the market.

 

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Moscow- Lukoil have released their quarterly financial reports today. Revenues are predicted to be down by low double digits for the next calendar year. Amortization of losses from the recent fire is expected to take over three years and is expected to exceed 75bn rubles. Austerity measures to offset the costs will include salary revisions and rotating shutdowns of lower volume facilities.

Helsinki- Nils Torvalds, a Finnish representative in the European Parliament, has been elected President of Finland following a hotly contested election. Torvalds is the most outspoken advocate of Finland joining NATO currently active in Finnish politics. Unnamed Russian sources in Helsinki state that Finland joining NATO would "destabilize" the region.

 

 

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London- The Economist reports today that the Russian Ministry of Labour announced a revision in the rules for qualification for unemployment insurance. Oil industry workers laid off will no longer qualify for benefits, and due to what is referred to a "temporary issue," new unemployment claims are not being processed at this time.

 

Moscow- Mr Sergei Lisitsin, Press Secretary for the Ministry of Labour, stated at a press conference that the Employment Fund is solvent and the issue relates to computer programming in the Employer Accounts section. 

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The Security Council unanimously passes a resolution attaching more sanctions on North Korea including freezing the assets of over 50 individuals and North Korean entities. The resolution was originally introduced by the delegation from Egypt.

 

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