Finance Minister comments on problem of energy tariff regulations

The question of the energy tariff regulations is impossible to be solved by one amendment to the budget draft, deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alexey Kudrin told journalists after today's meeting of a coordinative council of the four centrist factions in the State Duma. According to Kudrin, the Russian government stands for further development of the bill on state regulation of heating and electrical energy tariffs in Russia, which was rejected by the Federation Council the other day.

"We will support the idea of setting these tariffs for budget organizations only a limited number of times in a year", Kudrin declared. He also added that at present it was necessary "to formulate correctly and provide complete implementation of the amendments to the budget, in which heating and energy tariffs for next year will be stipulated".

Moreover, the Finance Minister noted that on the whole, the government was satisfied with the work of the State Duma budget committee, because "we have found a compromising decision on practically every disputable issue. Currently the most important thing for the government is to work out a joint decision on the tariffs with deputies", he stressed.

As it was reported earlier, on November 15, 2002 representatives of the State Duma's four centrist factions criticized the Federation Council's decision on rejecting the law on energy tariff regulations, which had been previously adopted by the State Duma. According to Vyacheslav Volodin, head of the Fatherland-All Russia faction, the setting of energy tariffs once a year, before the adoption of a federal budget on the first reading, was the main provision for adopting bills on restructuring RAO UES. After a meeting of the coordinative council of the centrist factions, deputies and the Finance Ministry worked out a joint decision and introduced this norm to the budget draft. The federal budget draft for 2003 will be considered on the third reading on November 22.

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