Chubais comments on government's energy sector bills

At its plenary meeting on June 27, 2002 the Russian State Duma may not approve on the first reading the Russian government's package of bills on reforming the electric energy sector of Russia, Chairman of RAO UES of Russia Anatoliy Chubais said today during the parliamentary hearings at the Russian Federation Council that were dedicated to the legislative basis for structural changes in the electric energy sector. He pointed out that the lower chamber of the Russian parliament was "more politically-minded" than the upper chamber.

On the other hand, the RAO UES of Russia's CEO reiterated that 56 regions of Russia had officially applied to the Russian State Duma with a request to approve on the first reading all 6 bills on reforming the electric energy sector. The RAO UES of Russia's CEO said: "The postponement of the approval of these bill will certainly mean that my resignation will be postponed, too".

As it was reported earlier, according to the Russian government's reforming plan, the Russian energy holding will be liquidated as an organization in spring of 2004, and its head will understandably resign, too. Chubais also pointed out that the management of RAO UES of Russia had developed a large number of amendments to these bills. They should be submitted for consideration to the corresponding committees of the State Duma and the Federation Council in the period between their consideration on the first and on the second reading. In particular, the Head of the holding pointed out that according to these amendments, the electric power cut-off in the event of non-payments will take place both in respect to legal entities and to individuals. The specified government's bills envisage that the electric energy can be cut off only from legal entities. Additionally, RAO UES of Russia's CEO pointed out the unreasonableness of distributing the functions of the tariff regulatory authority between the regions of Russia and the central authorities.


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