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Tatar-Bashkir Report: October 27, 1999

27 October 1999
Tatarstan's Debt To ING Bank To Be Restructured
Tatarstan reached a preliminary understanding with the Netherlands's largest bank, ING, on a restructuring of the republic's $100 million debt, Tatar Radio and Television reported on 26 October. The debt will be repaid in installments over the next six to seven years. Tatarstan's finance minister, Robert Musin, said in an interview with Tatar Radio that interest rates will be between 8 and 9 percent annually. He said that the sum of Tatarstan's initial payment is the only issue that remains unresolved. Musin said that the creditors currently want Kazan to pay $22.5 million as a first payment, while the Tatar government says it isn't able to pay more than $4-5 million because of the current level of the budget and the rate of wages. Musin said "I think [finally] we will discuss the starting payment of $15 million." He added that the agreement with the ING Bank is expected to be signed in December.

Tatarstan's 2000 Draft Budget Evolves
Tatar government officials reported on 26 October that an item for development has been included in the republican 2000 draft budget for the first time ever. Tatarstan's deputy premier and economics minister, Sergei Kogogin, and Finance Minister Robert Musin, made their comments at a briefing at the Cabinet of Ministers. The development item in the budget will reportedly total some 7.7 billion rubles ($310 million) and should consolidate all non-budget funds. Kogogin said that the draft law on Tatarstan's development budget was introduced to the State Council. Support for the republican industry is one of the 2000 budget's priorities, the officials said. As for the new Kazan-produced TU-214 aircraft, they added, Tatarstan's budget will not be able to render financial aid for its manufacture. This funding problem is reportedly to be solved by creating a leasing company in which Tatarstan and the Perm and Novosibirsk oblasts will cooperate with Sberbank.

Tatarstan's Foreign Trade Turnover Lowers
Tatarstan's foreign trade turnover has decreased by 19 percent over the first eight months of the year compared to the same period last year and totalled $997 million, Tatar Radio reported on 26 October. From the total turnover, some 80 percent was exports. Oil and oil products were the main export items, while vehicles, spare parts, and other machinery were the primary imports.

Compiled by Gulnara Khasanova