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Tatar-Bashkir Report: June 20, 2003

20 June 2003
Tatar, Gazprom Officials Discuss Cooperation
Tatar President Mintimer Shaimiev met on 19 June with visiting Gazprom deputy head Aleksandr Ananenkov to discuss increasing production of gas pumping and distributing units for Gazprom at republican companies, Tatarinform and reported the same day. The delegation also visited Gazprom suppliers Kazankompressormash and NII-Turbokompressor. Gazprom, which plans to produce 540 billion cubic meters of gas this year, needs 150-180 gas-pumping units a year to reconstruct its gas-transport facilities. Ananenkov said domestic industries can supply only half of them and Tatar companies could obtain additional orders for that equipment. On 20 June, the delegation is to visit the Kazan Motor Plant (KMPO). As part of its cooperation program with Gazprom scheduled to run till 2015, KMPO is to deliver 2 billion rubles ($66 million) in equipment to the gas monopoly this year.

New Drug Clinic Opened In Kazan...
A new drug clinic opened in Kazan on 19 June, RFE/RL's Kazan bureau reported the same day. Some 17.5 million rubles were spent on the construction, which began in 2000, and an additional 9 million rubles were allocated to equip it. The facility able to accept 275 patients will provide them with a 35-day course of treatment.

...As Bogelme Leads Republic's Raions In Drug Addiction
The same day, the interdepartmental antidrug commission under the Tatar Security Council discussed the growth of drug addiction in the republic's Bogelme Raion and measures to fight it, reported on 19 June. Bogelme deputy administration head Lera Mosteqyimova told the commission that the drug-addiction rate in the raion is now three times the republican average, blaming the problem on the location of the town of Bogelme at a transport crossroads. The commission decided to establish a center for social rehabilitation of former drug addicts and set up a chemical-toxicological laboratory in the town. It also recommended boosting efforts to fight drug trafficking in the raion.

Heads Of Defense Enterprises Gather In Yeshel Uzen
Heads of defense companies from Moscow, Novosibirsk, Kemerovo, Chelyabinsk, and Saratov took part in a meeting of the scientific-technical council of defense companies held on 18 June at the POZIS plant in Yeshel Uzen, reported the same day. The council was set up in 1998 to coordinate the efforts and promote the interests of companies of the defense sector in government. The council head, the general director of the Moscow Pribor company, said more than half of defense companies are facing losses despite the fact that state orders increased this year by some 25 percent. The head of the Department on State Orders of the Russian Agency on Ammunition, Vladimir Popov, said there is limited demand in the sector, and some of the Soviet-era companies will be closed. A $4 billion federal program was developed for the defense sector to overcome the crisis, he said.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova

Bashkortostan Signs Cooperation Agreement With Gazprom...
Gazprom head Aleksei Miller and Bashkir President Murtaza Rakhimov on 19 June signed a five-year cooperation agreement, reported the same day. According to the document, the Bashkir government will render Gazprom assistance in resolving issues of handing over stakes of the petrochemical Salavatnefteorgsintez, Kauchuk, Kaustik, and Gazservis companies to the gas monopoly in trust management. Gazprom for its part is to provide deliveries of gas to the republic. The agreement is the second one signed between Bashkortostan and Gazprom. The previous one was concluded in 1997.

...And With Russian Agriculture Ministry
Russian Deputy Prime Minister and Agriculture Minister Aleksei Gordeev and Bashkir President Rakhimov signed on 18 June in Ufa a five-year agreement between the Russian Agriculture Ministry and Bashkortostan on cooperation in the agroindustrial sector, Bashinform reported the next day. The document obliges the sides to cooperate in the development and modernization of Bashkortostan's agroindustrial sector and to promote interests of both Russian and Bashkortostan. Moscow is to help Bashkortostan establish foodstuffs markets and exchanges, monitor prices of agricultural goods and join Russia's united information system in the agroindustrial sector, to allocate state subsidies for agricultural manufacturers, to finance agricultural educational institutions, and to provide scientific aid in case of epidemics among cattle. Bashkortostan is to secure stable development of the sector and promote various forms of ownership of land, training personnel for agricultural companies, modernization and production of agricultural machines, and development of infrastructure in the republic's rural areas.

Bashkir Parliament Speaker Says Power-Sharing Treaty Still Important
Bashkir State Assembly Chairman Konstantin Tolkachev told a press conference in Bashinform on 19 June that the power-sharing treaty between Bashkortostan and Russia has not exhausted its potential and can be used as an instrument in resolving controversial issues. Tolkachev said federal authorities, despite recognizing the legal force of power-sharing treaties, are not implementing some provisions of the treaty. Tolkachev said there is no sense in signing a new treaty but it is necessary to keep working on the existing one.

Tolkachev also said it is inexpedient to maintain joint powers of Moscow and regions as they remain a source of conflict, and they should be divided up. Specifically, Tolkachev said, Bashkortostan is ready to take over some powers of federal authorities, including financing law-enforcement bodies. Equal legal rights of federation subjects does not mean they are actually equal, as some of them are able to execute all their powers while others are not, Tolkachev said. Bashkortostan, he said, is among the regions that can execute all their legal powers.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova