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#5 - JRL 7035
Russian investment climate becoming more favorable - foreign investors

DAVOS/MOSCOW. Jan 27 (Interfax) - The Russian investment climate is becoming more favorable and some Russian laws are superior to Western ones, foreign companies believe.

In Davos, a Russian delegation led by Economics Minister German Gref, comprising Federal Securities Commission chief Igor Kostikov, Deputy Minister for Economic Development Maxim Medvedkov and other officials, and members of the Council for Foreign Investments, including representatives of Nestle, Coca-Cola and Exxon Mobile, discussed investing in the Russian economy, Russian Economics Ministry spokesman Alla Borisenkova told Interfax on Saturday.

Foreign companies highly appraised Russia's work to perfect economic laws, saying that "individual Russian laws are even more encouraging than Western."

They noted, however, that there are problems in applying these laws in practice.

They said the inflow of foreign capital will increase if Russia changes over to international accounting standards, which is also important for accelerating banking reform, Borisenkova said.

She quoted Gref as saying that international accounting standards will shortly be introduced in Russian companies.

The talks also dealt with Russia's admission to the World Trade Organization. The Council promised to facilitate Russia's admission to this organization.

Gref said "Russia would like to pass over from talks to the admission procedure, and hopes for the United States' and Europe's support."

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