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Tatarstan: Short News Items

Prague, 12 March 1997 (RFE/RL) - Poland and Tatarstan are discussing tax incentives for bilateral investment. A member of a Polish trade delegation to Kazan, Andzhei Penchak, yesterday said there was an opportunity for Tatar businesses to invest in the Lodz region of Poland, where tax incentives will be introduced in May to attract new companies. Penchak told Tatar President Mintimer Shaimiyev he would be interested if a similar arrangement could be offered to Polish businesses in Tatarstan. A Polish trade and cultural exhibition is on display in Kazan till Friday.

Government Catching Up On Back Wages

Tatarstan's Finance Minister Rustem Minnekhanov says the government is coming to grips with the problems of unpaid backwages in the public sector. Minnekhanov told a closed-door cabinet meeting yesterday the government is about to pay its civil servants their February wages. He said the situation in Tatarstan was markedly better than in Russia, where civil servants are owed for wages going back to last year.

Tatar Bank Opens Branch In Russia

The Tatarstan Mazan Aq Bars bank opened its first branch outside Tatarstan today in the Russian town of Perm. Bankers say the new branch should help ease the flow of money between industrial, oil, and chemical companies that operate in Tatarstan and the rest of Russia. The Tatar-Inform agency says Aq Bars is also planning to open new branches in Moscow and Izhevsk, the capital of Udmurtiya.

Russian Companies To Build Tatar Telescope

The Tatar-Inform Agency says three Russian companies have won tenders to build components for a large telescope for the Academy of Sciences of Tatarstan. The companies are building the telescope's main mirror, which is to be 1.5 meters in diameter. The Academy of Sciences of Tatarstan is currently building an observatory in the Bakirlitepe mountains in Turkey. Tatar-Inform says the telescope will be installed under an 18-meter dome and will allow astronomers to view objects at the edge of the universe.