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Russia: Moscow Signs Business Deals With Ottawa

Ottawa, 20 December 2000 (RFE/RL) -- A recent Canadian trade mission to Russia is paying off with the signing of three business deals on Monday during the visit to Canada of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The trade mission last June resulted in a number of Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) worth nearly $700 million.

Canadian International Trade Minister Pierre Pettigrew and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Khristenko signed the contracts at a ceremony in Ottawa. SNC-Lavalin of Montreal signed an agreement with the city of Moscow to build a rapid transit system between Sheremetyevo Airport and the city center. The first phase of the project, valued at more than $200 million, will involve construction of a link from the airport to the Leningradsky Railway Terminal Station. Aeroflot is also involved in the project which is scheduled to be completed by 2005.

Nascor Incorporated of Calgary, Alberta signed a million-dollar contract with Rostnefteresurs Ltd. Of Rostov on the Don to provide computer technology, training and equipment for the construction of plants in the Rostov region which will be capable of producing 2,500 pre-fabricated wood-frame houses a year in the Rostov region. The western Canadian company recently signed a similar agreement worth nearly $3 million with Techtranstroy of Togliatti, Russia. The agreements are the first to introduce such technology in Russia.

Four other deals were also signed. Canstroy International of Toronto will build 100 to 150 houses a year over the next 10 years in the Moscow area using Canadian technology and materials. The project is valued at about $8 million a year.

Ferguson Simek Clark of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories -- specialists in construction in the north -- signed an $8 million contract with the Russian region of Chukotka to build a school, 20 houses and a local electrical grid.

The International Informatization Academy of Montreal signed an agreement to become a partner in a consortium that plans to develop heavy oil tar sands deposits in Tatarstan using Canadian technology and equipment. As well, the company will share distance learning technology and research and exchanges with Moscow State University and, in a deal with the Tatarstan Ministry of Agriculture, will export Canadian agricultural technology to the region.

And, finally, Navigator Trade House International of Winnipeg, Manitoba signed a letter of intent with the Tomilinskaya Poultry Complex in Moscow to upgrade and renovate an egg processing plant. The deal is worth $2 million.