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Investment in Russia's timber industry surges

      RBC, 12.03.2008, Moscow 12:27:53.Investment in Russia's timber industry grew nearly 50 percent from some $1.7bn in 2006 to $2.6bn in 2007, Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Belousov said during today's meeting of the government council for timber industry development. Meanwhile, the sector performed better than the Russian economy in general, having grown 41.6 percent in 2007. However, Belousov noted that the loss of profit in the industry amounted to $8bn. Paper and cardboard exports reached $8.2bn, including $4bn worth of raw wood, 80 percent of which was exported to China. European countries accounted for a mere 22 percent of the sector's total exports.

      The Economy Ministry suggests using public-private partnerships, as well as the Investment Fund's reserves and loans from Vnesheconombank to attract more investment to the industry.

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