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June Pelo
06-10-11, 21:56
The Finnish company Paulig has opened a new coffee roasting plant in Tver, a community 150 km from Moscow. Paulig is not the only Western foodstuffs manufacturer looking for growth in Russia. PepsiCo bought Russian juice and dairy companies and Coca Cola predits that Russia will soon be one of its five main markets. Finnish food manufacturers with Russian investments include Atria, Fazer and Valio.

Russia has 142 million inhabitants and they are relatively prosperous, with an average annual income of 8,500 euros, nearly three times that of China, and seven times that of India. Income taxes are just 13% and few Russians have housing loans, therefore Russians have money to spend.

Canterbury, Connecticut is now a sister city of Hanko, Finland. Anita Smiley, of Preston, who is active in the Finnish American Heritage Society, suggested the arrangement and the mayor of Hanko has approved the resolution. Smiley takes tour groups to Finland every year, and has been in contact with Henrik Hallikas, president of the Hanko Chapter of the Leage of Finnish-American Societies. Together they came up with the sister city idea.

A man and a woman of foreign origin are in custody on suspicion of financing terror and recruiting people for terrorist activities - the first such investigation in Finland. Police would not disclose the nationality of the suspects, but court documents reveal that one of them is a 34-year-old man, who is Somali-born. The woman is 28 years old and is suspected of pro-terorist fundraising. House searches have been conducted in the Helsinki region and evidence has been collected for the case. The target country was not named, but officials said that it is not very close to Finland.

FAR, October 2011