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Tatar-Bashkir Report: March 1, 2000

1 March 2000
Putin's Campaign Officials In Tatarstan Named
Tatarinform agency published a list of acting Russian President Vladimir Putin's campaign officials in Tatarstan on 1 March. Maysky collective farm Director Ilshat Ganiyev, Melita fur company Director Aleksei Pakhomov, rector of Kazan State University Gennadii Konoplev, general director of KamAZ automotive works Ivan Kostin, director of the Maxim Gorky museum in Kazan Alfia Tutaeva, and the deputy general-director of Tatneft, Rishat Abubakirov, were reportedly "selected by Putin himself." Tatarstan's state youth affairs committee chairman, Marat Bareev heads the Kazan headquarters of Putin's campaign. Previously, Bareev defended his being a state official at the same time as a campaign official by saying that he has taken a vacation from his first job to be able participate in the presidential election campaign.

Industrial Development Discussed At Governmental Conference
During a governmental conference on Tatarstan's industrial development, President Mintimer Shaimiev sharply criticized the director of the state committee on bankruptcy affairs and financial recovery for being passive in restructuring the debts of industrial companies to republican and federal budgets. Shaimiev stressed that in a situation of general production growth at the KamAZ Automotive Works, the Vostok Watch factory, the Kazan helicopter plant and the Kazan medical instruments factory, the average wages level ought to be increased. At the same conference, Tatarstan's deputy premier, minister of economy and industry, Sergei Kogogin, said that the average income per capita in the republic reached 1,200 rubles, but the total amount of back wages jumped to about 504 million rubles.

Bankrupt Bank Depositors Picket Freedom Square
About 200 depositors, mostly pensioners of the bankrupt Tatfondbank gathered at Freedom Square in front of the Cabinet of Ministers building in Kazan on 29 February. They urged Tatarstan's government to return their money, accusing former Prime Minister Muhammad Sabirov of arranging an illegal scheme five years ago that adversely affected Tatfondbank's assets. According to participants of the meeting, the average frozen deposit in the bank is about 2,000 rubles and they criticized a decision by Tatarstan's government for the deposits to be repaid without any adjustments for inflation or interest. Tatfondbank depositors complained that the decision was stalled and since their average monthly income is some 400-500 rubles, they consider their bank deposits to be serious sums of money.

Compiled by Iskender Nurmi