The T-72 is a family of Soviet main battle tanks that first entered production in 1971. About 20,000 T-72 tanks were built, The T-72A version introduced in 1979 is considered a second-generation main battle tank, it was exported and saw service in 40 countries and in numerous conflicts. The T-72B3 version introduced in 2010 is considered a third-generation main battle tank; the development of the T-72 was a direct result of the introduction of the T-64 tank. The T-64 was a ambitious project to build a competitive well-armoured tank with a weight of not more than 36 tons. Under the direction of Alexander Morozov in Kharkiv a new design emerged with the hull reduced to the minimum size possible. To do this, the crew was reduced to three soldiers, removing the loader by introducing an automated loading system; the much smaller design presented a problem. This led to the introduction of the 700 hp 5TDF engine, unreliable, difficult to repair, had a guaranteed lifespan similar to World War 2 designs.

Production of the T-64 with a 115-mm gun began in 1964. Plans for an up-gunned T-64A with a more powerful 125-mm gun had been made in 1963. Problems with the early production run were evident from the start, but a strong lobby formed around Morozov who advocated for the T-64 in Moscow, preventing rival developments and ideas from being discussed; because of the time-consuming construction of the 5TDF engines, which took about twice as long as the contemporary V-45, the Malyshev Factory in Kharkiv could not provide a sufficient number of 5TDF engines for all Soviet tank factories. This led to efforts at Uralvagonzavod to design a version of the T-64 with the cheaper and much more reliable V-45 engine of 780 hp; this model was only to be serially produced in the event of a war, a so-called "mobilization model". In 1967, the Uralvagonzavod formed "Section 520", to prepare the serial production of the T-64 for 1970; the team soon found out that the more powerful V-45 engine put a lot of stress on the T-64 hull, so that after some time cracks started to materialize.

A more stable solution was sought. An idea from 1960 was used, when a modification of the T-62 had been discussed: In 1961, two prototypes of "Object 167" had been built by Uralvagonzavod to test a stronger hull and running gear combination for that tank. Under influence from Kharkiv, the idea had been turned down by Moscow, but this construction, with its big, rubbercoated roadwheels now formed the basis for the mobilisation model of the T-64. Additional changes were made to the automatic loading system, taken from an earlier project intended for a T-62 upgrade; the 125 mm ammunition, consisting of a separate projectile and a propellant charge, was now stored horizontally on two levels, not vertically on one level as in the T-64. It was said to be more reliable than the T-64 autoloader. In 1964, two 125-mm guns of the D-81 type had been used to evaluate their installation in to the T-62, so the Ural plant was ready to adopt the 125 mm calibre for the T-64A as well. Uralvagonzavod produced the first prototype with a 125-mm gun and V-45K engine in 1968 as "Object 172".

After intensive comparative testing with the T-64A, Object 172 was re-engineered in 1970 to deal with some minor problems. However, being only a mobilization model, serial production of Object 172 was not possible in peacetime. In an unclear political process decree number 326-113 was issued, which allowed the production of Object 172 in the Soviet Union from 1 January 1972, freed Uralvagonzavod from the T-64A production; the first batch was built as "Object 172M" and, after some modifications, it was tested again in 1973 and accepted into service as the "T-72" under Soviet ministry directive number 554-172 dated 7 August 1973. At least some technical documentation on the T-72 is known to have been passed to the CIA by the Polish Colonel Ryszard Kukliński between 1971 and 1982. In 2018, the 3rd Central Research Institute in Moscow had tested a proof-of-concept demonstration for robotic tank mobility, was planning to further develop it based on the T-72B3 and other platforms; the 1st series production of T-72 Object 172M began in July at UKBM in Nizhny Tagil.

However, due to difficulties in getting the factory organised for the change in production from T-64 to T-72, only 30 completed tanks were delivered in 1973. Troubles continued in 1974 where out of a state production quota of 440 only 220 were declared, with the actual number of completed tanks being close to 150; as a result, substantial investment in tooling was undertaken. Only after modernisation, could the factory begin full-scale production of the T-72. Nizhny Tagil produced the tank in various modifications until 1992; the T-72 was the most common tank used by the Warsaw Pact from the 1970s until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. It was exported to other countries, such as Finland, Iran, Iraq and Yugoslavia, as well as being copied elsewhere, both with and without licenses. Licensed versions of the T-72 were made for Warsaw Pact consumers; these tanks had better and more consistent quality of make but with inferior armour, lacking the resin-embedded ceramics layer inside the turret front and glacis armour, replaced with all steel.

The Polish-made T-72G tanks had thinner armour compared to Soviet Army standard. Before 1990, Soviet-made T-72 export versions were downgraded for non-Warsaw Pact customers. Many parts and tools are not interchangeable between the Soviet and Czechoslovakian versions, which caused logistical problems. Yugoslavia developed the T-72 into the more advanced M-84, sold hundreds of them around the world during the 1980s; the Ira

Kirill Zimarin

Kirill A. Zimarin is a Russian banker and businessman, CEO of RCB Bank and a public speaker promoting investment opportunities in Cyprus. In 1993, Zimarin graduated with from the Lomonosov Moscow State University obtaining a bachelor's degree in economics of foreign countries and international relations, followed by a PhD in 1996 and a doctorate in economics in 2015. In 1998-2003, Zimarin was a visiting professor of Warsaw Universities. Zimarin started his banking in 1993 and worked in some medium-sized banks as dealer in financial markets, head of international operation, senior management positions. In 2003 he joined VTB Group, where he served as head of department in Vneshtorgbank and deputy president-chairman of the executive board of CJSC Vneshtorgbank Retail Services and Head of Investment Banking Division. In 2005, Zimarin joined a member of the board of directors. Since 2008 he continues to be a director. RCB Bank is one of the largest financial institutions in Cyprus. Since 2008, Zimarin has been president of the Association of International Banks in Cyprus.

The Association was set up in Limassol in 2002 and represents the interests of international banks in Cyprus bringing together 23 banks. Since 2011, Zimarin has been a member of the International Affairs Steering Group of the European Banking Federation; the Steering Group monitors WTO/GATS/EU bilateral trade agreement issues, foreign legislation, in particular in the US, which affect European banks. Since 2011, Zimarin has been a director of the Association of Cyprus Banks. In 2016, Zimarin was appointed a member of the International Presidential Business Advisory Council that plays an important role in forming business policy in Cyprus. In December 2016, during the signing ceremony of the first EFSI agreement in Cyprus between the European Investment Fund and RCB Bank Ltd, Zimarin stated: “The role of the banking system in Cyprus is to provide the much needed liquidity to healthy businesses that want to materialize their investment and growth plans; this is how we help the efforts of the government to achieve viable growth”.

Voprosy teorii i praktiki formirovaniya evropeyskoy finansovoy sistemy, 2012, ISBN 978-5282032574

Peter Bridgwater

Peter Bridgwater was the first president of the San Jose Clash—later known as the San Jose Earthquakes—Major League Soccer franchise. Prior to arriving in the Bay Area, Bridgwater was an executive of the Vancouver Whitecaps franchise in the North American Soccer League, he had been involved with professional soccer in San Jose since 1984, when he was named general manager of the NASL's San Jose Earthquakes. Bridgwater purchased the Earthquakes but the NASL ceased operations in 1985. After the NASL went under, Bridgwater became a founder of the Western Soccer Alliance, which became the USL First Division. Soccer America called him "one of the men most responsible for keeping professional outdoor soccer alive after the collapse of the North American Soccer League". Bridgwater was a venue director for the 1994 FIFA World Cup at Stanford Stadium in Palo Alto, California. Two years after the World Cup, the MLS was launched, he remained the general manager through the 1998 season, played a role in having San Jose host matches for the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup