Since Russia signed up to the UN Convention against Corruption in 2006 the World has watched closely for signs that it is really looking to get to grips with the very real corruption issues that the country faces. The news therefore that a new Anti-Corruption Bill has passed its first reading in the lower house of parliament in Moscow will be welcomed.

There are very real hopes that the legislation will become law not least because it is sponsored and supported by both Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev and the Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

If the law is passed it will bring Russia a step closer to the standards that are being adopted internationally in relation to the fight against corruption.