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Tatar-Bashkir Report: August 14, 2001

14 August 2001
Kuchma Approves Tatarstan's Initiatives At Ukrtanafta
Tatarstan's President Mintimer Shaimiev met with Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma on 11 August to discuss ways to maintain the stable operation of the Kremenchug oil refinery, which is the major production facility of the Tatar-Ukrainian joint venture Ukrtatnafta, RFE/RL's Kazan Bureau reported. Shaimiev said that he received Kuchma's "approval and understanding in solving the difficult economic issues [linked with Ukrtatnafta]."

In 1998 the Ukrainian side agreed to pay off the venture's $19.8 million debt for oil delivered from Tatarstan with a state-owned parcel of shares. This would have made Tatarstan a major owner of Ukrtatnafta. But later the Ukrainian government froze the handover of shares, claiming that it would violate Ukrainian law. Tatarstan responded with a five-fold reduction in oil deliveries to the refinery. On 8 August, Ukrtatnafta's Observers Council, which is chaired by Tatarstan's First Deputy Prime Minister Ravil Muratov, dismissed the venture's entire management headed by Vladimir Matishchin.

Currently Tatarstan owns about 29 percent and the Ukrainian government 43 percent of Ukrtatnafta's shares.

Only Six Cholera Carriers Remain In TR
A spokesman for the state epidemic monitoring service said on 13 August that only six patients are still undergoing active anti-cholera therapy in the republic's hospitals. Thirty-three former carriers of the diease are under constant observation by medics. Meanwhile the number of cholera cases registered in the republic reached 70, 37 of those infected were children under the age of 14.

Former Defense Industry Plant Signs Foreign Contracts
Kazan's Electropribor plant has signed two major contracts on the delivery of electric equipment for Chinese and Indian Air Forces, Tatarstan State Radio reported on 13 August.

Ecuadorian Diplomat Visits Kazan
Ecuador's Ambassador to Russia, Jimena Martines de Peres is due to arrive in Kazan on 14 August, Tatarinform reported. During her two-day visit Martines will meet with members of republic's government and business circles.

Shell Interested In Projecting Tuben Kama Oil Refining Plant
The American Shell Global Solutions Company has expressed its interest in projecting the technological system of future Tuben Kama Oil Processing Plant, Solid-Info agency reported on 13 August. According to the agency, Shell also was ready to offer its services in training the plant's staff and optimizing its management. If successful, this would be the first Shell Business Solutions project in Russia.

Tatneft To Purchase Hewlett-Packard Technologies
Tatneft oil company official Valerii Nugumanov told on 13 August that his company has negotiated an agreement with Hewlett-Packard Russia on using its technologies for data processing and communications.

Traffic Accidents Claimed 200 Lives In 2001
Over 200 people, 12 of them children, were killed and some 2,000 people were injured in car accidents in Tatarstan during the first half of 2001. A total of 1658 crashes occurred during that period.

Traffic Jams Become A Serious Problem For Kazan
Due to the resumption of repair works at the Leninsky dam in Kazan on 13 August, major transport flows have been redirected to Kirovsky dam and pontoon bridge in Kirov and Aviastroitelny districts, Efir TV reported. As a result, public and private transportation was delayed by 1-1.5 hour long traffic jams in those areas.

Enver Bakirov Dies At The Age Of 80
Composer Enver Bakirov, one of the founders of professional Tatar music, composer of the opera Tukay [correct?] and of numerous songs and other musical compositions, died at the age of 80 on 12 August, RFE/RL's Kazan Bureau reported. President Mintimer Shaimiev, Prime Minister Rustam Minnikhanov and Kazan mayor Kamil Iskhakov were among those who paid their last respects to him at Kazan's Great Concert Hall the following day.

By Iskender Nurmi