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11 Jul, 2007 05:55

The Media Mirror. What’s in the Russian newspapers today?

The Russian press finds paradoxes in electoral support five months before the parliamentary elections in the country, writes about China’s economic expansion and also narrates about an interesting know-how by photographers in Russia’s city of Yekaterinbur

Every moment brings closer the parliamentary elections in Russia. The Center for Public Opinion Research, writes Vremya Novostei, is now trying to establish which of the major political parties have a stronger appeal to the public. In the latest survey there were three different definitions of fairness:

“Communist (equal income to all, everything shared equally, no rich, no poor),”

“Western Liberal (social equality, equal rights for all, rule of law, social security, fairness)”

“A concrete down-to-earth definition (free high quality medical care, education available for all)”,

but they were not put against a list of political parties when the participants were invited to choose one of the three. Only later they were asked which party they supported. And at this point the miracles began. 21% of those who would vote for “The Fair Russia” party chose the Communist definition of social fairness. The Communist supporters responded in kind: 18 % chose Liberal values over others. As a whole the survey showed a great difference between people’s perceptions and their politics, says the paper. This might be just another reflection of the transitional period the nation is undergoing.

Vremya Novostei came up with the headline “The Advance of the Celestial Empire” turning to China’s economic expansion. Chinese imports have become an evident threat to Russia’s industries, especially to those private industrial enterprises which have been investing heavily in new technology and new production facilities over the past decade. Import of steel pipes, for instance, increased 89 times in the space of three years from 2003 to 2006. The same goes for the Russian automotive industry which suffered from a 400% increase in Chinese car imports in 2006 alone. The problem, Russian experts think, lies in the strong government support which Chinese enterprises are receiving but their Russian competitors don’t. “Protectionist policies might become the only option for Russia, as they have been for many countries in the world,” writes the paper.

170 rubles, or $ US 6.5, is the cost of a photograph with President Putin, writes Komsomolskaya Pravda. In Yekaterinburg three local photographers applied creative thinking to an old trick. Instead of placing a flat live-sized photograph of the President on a city square for the public to take pictures with the figure, they took the market to the client by hiring an E class Mercedes, putting the figure in a sitting position inside and driving around town, visiting schools, kindergartens and squares.