PRESS DIGEST - Russia - April 15

By Reuters

Published: 09:07 GMT, 15 April 2015 | Updated: 09:07 GMT, 15 April 2015

MOSCOW, April 15 (Reuters) - The following are some stories in Russia's newspapers on Wednesday. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

VEDOMOSTI

www.vedomosti.ru

- Only Russian companies with the appropriate experience and sufficient financial capacity will get access to the development of off-shore oil and gas fields, according to Deputy Natural Resources Minister Denis Khramov.

- Sixty one percent of Russians believe that freedoms and rights could be sacrificed for the sake of establishing order in the country, according to the latest survey of the Levada centre pollster.

- Private medicine has grown by 24.2 percent as it becomes more and more difficult to get state medical services, the daily says referring to conclusions of the Audit Chamber on the impact of medical reforms in Russia.

KOMMERSANT

www.kommersant.ru

- Russia and U.S. company Schlumberger have worked out the conditions of a deal for the Eurasia Drilling Company which accounts for 30 percent of drilling services in Russia. Schlumberger has agreed on selling its share if the U.S. sanctions hit the company.

- Private investment and the reduction of the role of the state in the economy could help boost industrial growth in Russia, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Tuesday.

- The U.S. online service of booking hotels, HotelTonight, is launching its operation in Russia from Wednesday.

- Russia's prosecutors are suggesting that Stanislav Rogozhin, head of a "Russian business group" in Germany belonging to PricewaterhouseCoopers, was allegedly involved in stealing more than 330 million roubles ($6.54 million) from the state between 2004 and 2007, the daily reports.

ROSSIISKAYA GAZETA

www.rg.ru

- Russians living in more than 17,000 villages and small towns have no access to any medical services and 11,000 out of them are located 20 km away from the nearest doctor, according to an Audit Chamber report on medical reforms in Russia which included a reduction in the number of doctors and medical institutions to reduce state spending.

- Last year 90,000 medical workers lost their jobs as a result of reforms, Audit Chamber spokesman Alexander Filipenko is quoted as saying. Filipenko also said that the number of patients who died in hospitals last year grew by 17,900 compared to the previous year.

NEZAVISIMAYA GAZETA

wwww.ng.ru

- Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov refused on Tuesday to comment on the "shocking" conclusions of the Audit Chamber that cutting financing of the social sector has affected the quality and accessibility of medical services in Russia, the daily says.

- The Finance Ministry is promising to reduce budget spending on defence, state management and the social sector in 2016 and is suggesting payments to some pensioners should be cut and the retirement age be raised. ($1 = 50.4970 roubles) (Reporting By Tatiana Ustinova)

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