Bank warns of billions in losses

Russia’s state development bank says it stands to lose billions
of dollars from financing unprofitable construction projects for
the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

VEB chairman Vladimir Dmitriev said in a recent interview with
the Gazeta.ru news portal that of the 19 projects the bank is
funding, at least eight would fail to turn a profit. The eight
projects are receiving about $5.2 billion, and Dmitriev expressed
doubts the money will be repaid.

Among those receiving the credits are companies owned by metals
tycoons Vladimir Potanin and Oleg Deripaska, and also state-owned
Sberbank and Gazprom. All four have asked the government for help
in covering some of their losses.

The overall bill for the Winter Games stands at $51 billion,
making them by far the most expensive Olympics in history.