It's official - Siberia is to stop being one of the only places on earth where you cannot buy a McDonald's hamburger.
People queuing for McDonalds' meal in Tyumen, on the western edge of Siberia. Picture: The Siberian Times
Now the world's largest food chain has received its long-awaited permission to open its first five outlets in Novosibirsk.
The restaurants in Siberia's unofficial capital will have seating for 50 miners.
All will open this year and another five fast food outlets are expected during 2013, said reports on Monday.
McDonalds opened its first Russian restaurant on 31 January 1990, before the collapse of the Soviet Union, and set a world record by serving 30,000 on day one. The chain now has some 324 outlets in Russia, but none in Siberia or the Russian Far East, say media reports.
Well, not quite.
There is one on the western edge of Siberia in Tyumen but the opening in Novosibirsk in a major leap east in McDonald's conquest of its final frontier.
McDonald's also has plans to open in Krasnoyarsk, Tomsk, Barnaul and Novokuznetsk.
The new energy source in the remote settlement of Yailyu is powered by the sun, of which Siberia has plenty - summer and winter.
A 175-room Marriott hotel is to open on a landmark site in Novosibirsk, while Irtuksk is set to get both a Kempinski and a Hyatt.
Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and US secretary of state John Kerry will attend the May 14-15 Arctic Council in Kiruna, Sweden.
Bone-cracking cold, Gulag prison camps, oil flares visible from space, and bleak industrial cities - this is a common Western stereotype of Siberia.
Likely reserves of 200 tonnes of gold have been identified in the Gora Rudnaya area of the Aldansky district.
The Siberian Times keeps writing about the unique seals sanctuary organised by Lora Beloivan from Vladivostok.