July 01, 1996

Travel Notes

Ruble begins to crawl

According to a joint Russian government and Central Bank decision taken this May, a new ‘crawling peg’ for the ruble is to go into operation as of July 1. It will be kept between R5,000 and R5,600 to the dollar until the end of the year. The purpose of the new system is to cut daily fluctuations (setting a maximum 1.5% difference between upper and lower daily limits) and give the Central Bank more control of the market. In addition, the Central Bank will announce the new rate at 10 am every day, based on quotations from the interbank and currency exchange markets. Previously, MICEX (Moscow Interbank Currency Exchange) was used as the exchange rate source.

Russia’s Transaero airline has announced plans to call an international tender of $1.2 bn for 30 extra aircraft, to match its growth to the end of the century. Transaero, created in 1990, currently has just 11 planes, most of them Boeings, and ranks 6th or 7th among Russian carriers. However, it is the country’s largest private airline, showing rapid growth (traffic increased by 186% in 1995) and maintaining a solid reputation for high standards and friendly service. Transaero is expected to approach manufacturers with details of the tender within the next few months.

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