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Tatar-Bashkir Report: April 25, 2001

25 April 2001
Tatarstan has No Plans to Import Nuclear Wastes...
Alfred Burnayev, who heads Kazan Radon said on 24 April that Tatarstan, has no facilities to handle the importation of nuclear wastes from abroad.

...As Duma Deputies Explain Their Votes on the Issue
Duma deputy (Russia's Regions) Fandas Safiullin told the Kazan press that he had supported the importation measure because Russia needs the money for environmental projects. Meanwhile, Deputy (Independent) Ivan Grachev said that he had voted against the measure because the projected incomes do not offset threats to future generations.

Tatenergo Customs Not Paying Their Bills
Ilshat Fardiyev, the director general of Tatenergo, said on 24 April that the failure of the company's customers to pay their bills had become "a major problem." He also said that his company was negotiating with UES to restructure its debts.

"Realistic" Housing Charges Urged
State Komunenergo electricity and heat distributing company director Rinat Abdullin said on 25 April that "current charges should be increased to make them more realistic" and to end the losses in his company's branches.

Malaysia Interested in Cooperation
Malaysian Ambassador Datuka Yakhya bin Baba told Tatarstan trade minister Khafiz Salikhov on 24 April that his country is interested in a large number of products of the republic.

Tuben Kama to Purchase Share in Oil Deposit...
The Tuben Kama Oil Chemical Company plans to purchase a 40% share in Urengoil to extract the oil of Yaro-Yakhtin deposit in the Yamal-Nenets autonomous area, "Vremya i Dengi" reported on 25 April. This acquisition will allow Tuben Kama to avoid being acquired by Tatneft, officials said.

...And Launches Gasoline Production
The Tuben Kama company meanwhile launched the production of gasoline, Tatarstan State Radio reported.

WTC Reaches Out to Tatars beyond Tatarstan
The World Tatar Congress executive committee will hold a seminar for leaders of Tatar public organizations from across Russia on 26-27 April, RFE\RL's Kazan Bureau reported.

Another Round in KSU Rector Elections
The Kazan State University conference failed to elect a new rector on 24 April, RFE\RL's Kazan Bureau reported. Acting rector Gennady Konoplev led with 32% of ballots and another round of voting will now take place.

Tatarstan to Aid Kursk Crew Families
Tatarstan�s Yashel Uzen refrigerators factory has announced that it will supply its products free to the family members of the Kursk crew, Tatarinform agency reported on 25 April.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi

Ufa Introduces Private Ownership off Land
The Bashkortostan government legalized the private ownership of land on 24 April, ITAR-TASS reported. Officials said this was only the beginning of a process to move toward the free sale of all property.

Industrial Growth Reported...
Deputy Prime Minister Ravil Garifullin said on 24 April that the industrial output in the republic had increased by 9 percent in 2001 as compared to the same period din 2000. Greatest increases have taken place in the oil, machine-building and timber industries. Retail sales have risen 5.5 percent over the same period, he said.

...But Small Businesses Still Playing Small Role
Small businesses contribute only 7% to Bashkortostan�s gross regional product, reported on 24 April. This figure has been constant for the last several years despite efforts to promote small business.

Soviet-Era Youth Organization Revived
President Murtaza Rakhimov has issued a decree calling for state support of the defense sport and technical organization (OSTO) to prepare young people for military service, Bashinform reported on 24 April. He thus revives a Soviet-era practice.

Bashkir Honey Goes into Space
Bashkortostan-produced honey is being consumed by astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station, news agencies reported on 24 April.

Rakhimov Meets Female Veterans
President Rakhimov met the female World War II veterans on 24 April in advance of Victory Day, RFE\RL's Ufa correspondent reported. After meeting with the president, the female veterans visited the Combat Glory Museum and the Lala Tulpan mosque.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi