Dmitry's Feed
May 16, 2014

Russia loses $275 million satellite in latest rocket failure

MOSCOW/ALMATY, May 16 (Reuters) – A Russian rocket carrying
a $275 million telecommunications satellite failed and burned up
shortly after launch on Friday, the latest in a series of
setbacks for Russia’s once-pioneering space industry.

It was the second failure for Russia’s workhorse Proton-M
rocket in less than a year, and the second time that it had
failed to deliver a European satellite intended to provide
advanced telecoms and Internet access to remote parts of Russia,
after the last one crashed shortly after launch in 2011.

May 14, 2014

Japan’s first space station commander and crewmates land safely

ALMATY, May 13 (Reuters) – The first Japanese to command a
space mission and crewmates from the United States and Russia
landed safely in Kazakhstan on Wednesday, wrapping up a 188-day
stay aboard the International Space Station.

“We have confirmation of landing,” a NASA television
presenter said during a live broadcast as the capsule with the
space trio touched down in a Kazakh steppe 148 km (93 miles)
southeast of the town of Dzhezkazgan at 07:58 a.m. (0158 GMT).

Apr 2, 2014

U.S. “fundamentally stands” with Central Asia on independence after Crimea

ALMATY (Reuters) – The United States will “fundamentally stand” with post-Soviet Central Asian nations to protect their territorial integrity and independence, a senior U.S. official said on Wednesday, sending a signal to Russia after its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine.

Russia’s seizure of the Black Sea peninsula two weeks ago sent jitters across Central Asia, whose mainly autocratic rulers tacitly accepted Moscow’s actions, fearing their former overlord may use a similar tactic in their states.

Mar 27, 2014

Kashagan group says no oil restart date yet, probe results delayed

ALMATY, March 27 (Reuters) – A consortium developing
Kazakhstan’s huge Kashagan oilfield said on Thursday the results
of a probe into an industrial accident there were now expected
in the second quarter of 2014, and it was unclear when crude
production can be restarted.

“The results of these investigations are expected in
March/June 2014,” a consortium spokesman said in written
comments to Reuters.

Mar 27, 2014

As Kiev looks West, Putin turns east to build Eurasian dream

ALMATY (Reuters) – With his biggest prize escaping his grasp in Ukraine, Vladimir Putin is likely to turn to the autocrats of Central Asia, particularly Kazakhstan’s Nursultan Nazarbayev, to further his aim of erecting a Eurasian Union of former Soviet states.

The Russian president’s swift annexation of Crimea has earned him huge popularity at home but ends his dream for now of bringing the rest of Ukraine voluntarily into the new structure he plans to build on as much as possible of the ex-Soviet space.

Mar 18, 2014

Kashagan oil group appeals $737 mln ecological fine

ALMATY, March 18 (Reuters) – A consortium developing
Kazakhstan’s huge Kashagan oilfield said it had appealed a 134.2
billion tenge ($737 million) fine by a regional Kazakh authority
for ecological damage at the site in the Caspian Sea.

The fine adds to the woes of the multinational group, which
has already spent about $50 billion after numerous delays.

Feb 27, 2014

Kazakhstan to create regional airline with Bombardier planes

ALMATY, Feb 27 (Reuters) – Kazakhstan will create a new
airline to serve domestic routes and has entered a partnership
agreement with Canada’s Bombardier Inc on delivery of
its first 10 planes, the oil-rich country’s sovereign wealth
fund said on Thursday.

President Nursultan Nazarbayev met Bombardier Chief
Executive Officer Pierre Beaudoin on Wednesday and told him that
the company would perform domestic flights and be called Air
Kazakhstan, the presidential press service said.

Feb 19, 2014

Panicky social media rock Kazakh banks after devaluation

ALMATY, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Kazakhstan’s central bank on
Wednesday accused anonymous “provocateurs” of stirring up panic
on the market, still jumpy after last week’s tenge devaluation,
by using social media to trigger a run on deposits at three
local banks.

The central bank devalued the tenge by 19 percent on Feb. 11
to about 185 per dollar to prevent large-scale foreign exchange
speculation and adjust to a freer rouble float in neighbouring
Russia, Kazakhstan’s main trading partner.

Feb 6, 2014

Kazkommertsbank finalises deal to buy stake in BTA Bank

ALMATY, Feb 6 (Reuters) – Kazkommertsbank
(KKB) is to buy rival BTA Bank jointly with
Kazakh businessman Kenes Rakishev for about $1 billion, in a
deal that will shift BTA’s bad debts left over from the
financial crisis into the private sector.

BTA is currently majority-owned by Kazakh sovereign wealth
fund Samruk-Kazyna, which bailed out the bank in 2009 during the
crisis.

Jan 30, 2014

Kazakhstan’s KCell says still in talks on 4G licence

ALMATY, Jan 30 (Reuters) – KCell ,
Kazakhstan’s largest mobile phone operator, has made little
headway in obtaining a licence for a 4G high-speed wireless
network in the booming oil-rich nation, leaving state-controlled
Kazakhtelecom as the only holder of a licence in the country.

Posting a 2.5 percent rise in net profit for 2013, the group
which is controlled by Nordic parent TeliaSonera said
it was continuing talks on a licence to offer 4G services -
which are driving increased mobile data usage in many western
markets – but had not yet been successful.