Russian minister offers ways to beat 2003 problem

Initiating and railroading bills towards overcoming possible effects of the "2003 crisis" is the goal of the interfactional working group for overcoming the 2003 problem. This is said in a report prepared by Russian Interior Minister Boris Gryzlov for the conference 2003 Problem: Myths and the Reality. At the conference his report was read out by his aide Sergei Safonov. Boris Gryzlov, who until recently was the leader of the Unity faction at the State Duma, the lower chamber of Russian parliament, could not be present. It is the opinion of the report's author that the factors which may lead the Russian economy to a crisis in 2003 are -- obsolescence and wear and tear of the basic assets of enterprises, payments of the foreign debt of Russia and the USSR which the federal budget cannot bear, demographic crisis due to recent-years birth rate fall in Russia. Boris Gryzlov suggests a comprehensive approach to solution of these problems. For one, the State Duma is to adopt a package of laws downsizing financial risks and the demographic load on society in two years to come. Industrial retooling is a must, in Gryzlov's view. The interfactional working group for overcoming the 2003 problem in Russia was set up on the State Duma decision on December 6, 2000.

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