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Tatar-Bashkir Report: May 14, 1999

14 May 1999
Shaimiev: Communist Ban Undesirable
The president of Tatarstan, Mintimer Shaimiev, said in an interview with Interfax on 13 May that State Duma deputies will, in the long run, confirm a prime minister candidate nominated by President Boris Yeltsin. He said not only the deputies' sense of self-preservation but other instincts will lead to their approval of a premier. Otherwise, the situation may result in a ban on the Communist Party of the Russian Federation (KPRF), because, in Shaimiev's words, the situation is ripe for this. Shaimiev said he considers such a development "absolutely undesirable."

New Government Members Appointed
President Mintimer Shaimiev appointed Marat Akhmetov as deputy prime minister and minister of agriculture and foodstuffs, Sergei Kagogin as deputy prime minister and minister of economics and industry, and Valerii Vasilyev as the chairman of the State Property Committee of Tatarstan, Tatar radio and television reported on 13 March. The candidacies of the new members were confirmed on the same day by State Council commissions. They are scheduled to be passed by parliament on 26 May.

Akhmetov, 44, the administrative head of Tatarstan's Baltach district, will replace Valerii Vasilyev as agriculture and foodstuffs minister. The 41-year-old Kagogin previously worked as the head of Yeshel-Uzen district. His predecessor as deputy premier, Renat Gubaidullin, was reportedly released from his duties at his own request along with the former chairman of the State Property Committee, Damir Bikbov.

Morozov: Impeachment To Succeed; Duma Dissolution Inevitable
Oleg Morozov, State Duma deputy from Tatarstan and a leader of the Duma faction Rossiiskiye Regiony, said in an interview with Tatar television on 13 May that he is sure that 300 deputies will vote to impeach President Boris Yeltsin. He said "up to now I have had doubts whether 300 votes will be gathered, if only" narrowly, "now I'm sure." He added that "after all of this, the dissolution of the State Duma is inevitable if the impeachment procedure will stick at any of stages -- either with the Supreme Court or in the Constitutional Court."

Gazprom Head To Discuss Extra Gas Deliveries To Tatarstan
The head of the Russian gas monopoly Gazprom, Rem Vyakhirev, arrived in Kazan on 13 May for a working visit, Tatar radio and television reported. The possibility of increasing gas deliveries to Tatarstan as well as the recent rise in gas prices will be the main topics of discussion during the visit. Tatar President Mintimer Shaimiev said at a press conference at the Kazan airport that "in the course of increasing domestic production, we would like the price for gas [its] supply not to become obstacles..." Shaimiev said he doesn't exclude the prospect of different approaches being used with different companies in securing gas payments. Vyakhirev said that Gazprom will not agree to lower prices for the republic's companies. He promised to visit Tatarstan two or three times a year and added that Tatarstan is an "experimental case" for Gazprom. Vyakhirev will meet Shaimiev as well as Tatgazinvest and Tattransgaz officials before leaving Tatarstan on 14 May.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova