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Russia: Duma Delays Recess To Discuss Tax Code, Spending Cuts

Moscow, 10 June 1997 (RFE/RL) - The heads of parliamentary factions in Russia's lower house agreed today to put off the deputies' summer recess until after they have discussed a new tax code and government proposed spending cuts in the 1997 budget.

Nikolai Kharitonov, head of the Agrarian parliamentary group, said the Duma will sit until June 24, four more days than planned.

Speaking at a Federation Council (upper house) session today, First Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly Chubais again called on lawmakers to approve the tax code in first reading. The draft 1998 budget is based on the new tax code, which aims to make Russia's tax system more transparent.

Chubais defended the government's economic policies and said spending had to be cut in order to offset poor tax collection.

The Duma is expected to discuss the 1997 spending cuts tomorrow. . Chubais has been invited to address the session tomorrow.