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    Foreign direct investment in Russia up 39 pct in H1 says Putin

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    Foreign direct investment in the Russian economy increased by 39 percent year on year in January-June 2011, to over $27 billion, Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday.

    Foreign direct investment in the Russian economy increased by 39 percent year on year in January-June 2011, to over $27 billion, Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday.

    "The main task now is to maintain that positive trend and focus on the quality of long-term investment to ensure that technology and innovations flow into our country along with capital, and modern production facilities and jobs are created," Putin said at a meeting of the government commission on foreign investment.

    Putin said that foreign direct investment in Russia in the first half of 2011 came close to the level of the pre-crisis year 2007 when it stood at $29.6 billion.

    The recovery of the Russian economy and the government's measures to improve the business climate in the country give hope that FDI could hit $60-70 billion, Putin said.

    According to the Russian Central Bank's estimates, foreign direct investment in Russia grew to $41.2 billion in 2010 from $36.5 billion in 2009. FDI stood at $55.1 billion in 2007 and hit a record $75.5 billion in 2008.

    Russia's net private capital outflow shrank to $9.9 billion in the second quarter of 2011 from $21.3 billion in the first quarter while June registered a net capital inflow of $3 billion for the first time since the start of the year.

    Russia's Central Bank and Finance Ministry expect net private capital outflow to reach $30-35 billion in 2011, compared with $31.2 billion in 2010.

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