December 16, 1998 |
ICN Pharmaceuticals Inc., the biggest drug maker in Eastern Europe, said it will suspend production at its five Russian plants for 20 days beginning Christmas Day, because the slumping Russian ruble has slashed consumers' purchasing power. "Our warehouses are filled with medicine that can't be sold," said company spokesman Sergei Korol. The ruble has tumbled 69% since August, and Korol said distributors owe ICN $34 million for previous supplies.
November 1, 1998 |
After seven weeks of intense speculation and debate, Russia's new prime minister unveiled a vague and contradictory economic crisis plan Saturday that amounts to a tactical retreat from market reforms. Prime Minister Yevgeny M. Primakov said he will try to pull Russia's economy out of its nose dive with measures including some price controls, state support for industry and increased regulation of financial flows. But he insisted that his country will not revert to a Soviet-style economy.
September 26, 1998 |
A day after issuing a rough draft of its economic rescue plan, Russia's untested government was thrown into disarray Friday when the man in charge of renegotiating billions of dollars in debt with the West suddenly quit. Alexander N. Shokhin, a deputy prime minister, said he was resigning to protest the reappointment of the finance minister who was in place six weeks ago, when decisions by the previous government threw Russia's banking system and economy into chaos.
September 25, 1998 |
Russia's new government announced a grab bag of fix-it measures Thursday for its broken-down economy, including a revival of the state monopoly on vodka and other spirits, a money-spinning scheme as old as the czars. Prime Minister Yevgeny M. Primakov, speaking at the first meeting of the Cabinet, endeavored to reassure a population shellshocked by a free-falling currency that his government will keep its interests close to heart.
September 17, 1998 |
The ruble shed 38% of its value in a renewed downward slide Wednesday amid fears that Russia's new government plans to print money--and probably provoke still-higher inflation--in an attempt to get out of economic crisis. But President Boris N. Yeltsin told German Chancellor Helmut Kohl by phone that Russia, in crisis since a de facto devaluation of the currency in mid-August, is now "normalizing."
September 16, 1998 |
Russia's new government proposed printing money to pay wages that are overdue, but no decision on increasing the money supply will be made until the Central Bank's new board of directors is in place, Chairman Viktor V. Gerashchenko said. The board is scheduled for a confirmation vote in parliament today. Meanwhile, the head of the centrist Our Home Is Russia party, Alexander N. Shokhin, was named deputy prime minister in charge of financial issues.