Unilever sees Russian growth despite crisis

MOSCOW, March 5 Thu Mar 5, 2009 6:47am EST

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MOSCOW, March 5 (Reuters) - Food and household products maker Unilever (ULVR.L)(UNc.AS) sees significant sales growth in Russia in 2009, in spite of the financial crisis, the company's local head said on Thursday.

"There may be a slight slowdown in the third and fourth quarters but for the year as a whole we expect significant growth in all categories," Sanjiv Kakkar, chairman of Unilever Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, told reporters.

Kakkar also said Unilever planned to invest $140 million in the construction of a factory in the Russian city of Tula in 2009-2014.

Unilever Chief Financial Officer Jim Lawrence told Reuters last month the company expected sales to increase in developing and emerging markets this year where economies will grow at a faster rate than in the developed world. [ID:nN17374822] (Reporting by Maria Plis; writing by Maria Kiselyova)

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