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Tatar-Bashkir Report: November 23, 2004

23 November 2004
Shaimiev Seeks To Speed Up Work On Housing Legislation
President Mintimer Shaimiev told a meeting of Tatarstan's government on 22 November that a draft law on mortgage housing in his republic is "conceptually ready for adoption, but it is necessary to speed up the process of considering the proposed amendments and elaborate the mechanisms of loan distribution in both urban and rural areas," RFE/RL�s Kazan bureau reported the next day.

Shaimiev emphasized that it is essential that the law goes into force as of 1 January. He said that the legislation should be designed to help those who are in special need of better housing, including young families.

Shaimiev Named President Of The Year
Mintimer Shaimiev received the President of the Year award on 20 November during Russia�s National Olympus Awards for "ensuring interethnic and interconfessional accord and turning the Tatarstan Republic into a European-level region," Tatarstan-Yanga Gasyr TV reported on 22 November. Shaimiev also won the award in 2001. The president reportedly did not attend the awards ceremony and the prize was received on his behalf by Tatarstan�s representative to the Russian Federation, Nezif Mirikhanov.

Tatar Venture Boosts Its Activities In Libya
The oil-prospecting company Tatneftegeofizika was the only company from Russia to participate in Libyan energy week in Tripoli, Intertat reported on 22 November. The company's presentation reportedly attracted the attention of representatives of Libya's national oil company. In 2003, the venture -- which is a division of Tatneft -- won an international tender for discovering oil and gas in the Libyan desert, and registered its branch in Tripoli earlier this year.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi

Major Bashkir Plants Reports Falling Profits
One of the main industrial players in Bashkortostan, the Salavatnefteorgsintez petrochemical plant, reported third-quarter net earnings of 814 million rubles ($28 million), "Kommersant-Daily" wrote on 22 November. The lower earnings were mainly due to expenses for renovating its facilities, rising oil prices, and rising export taxes for oil products. The daily cited some petrochemical industry experts as saying that if the prices for oil products fail to catch up to rising oil prices, other oil-processing companies in Russia may post losses this year.

Bashkortostan's government owns a 53.9 percent stake in the company.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi