Prime Minister ViktorChernomyrdin, who has long-standing ties with the country’s oiland gas industry, is now losing support from that sector, Vek(no. 34) reports. One sign cited by the weekly of that loss insupport is the fact that neither Gazprom chairman Rem Vikhayrevnor any other oil bosses attended the "Russia is Our Home"congress last week. One reason for their absence was Chernomyrdin’s decision to increase excise taxes on oil exports, which cutthe profits of the oil companies by half a billion dollars. Thedecision to impose the tax was forced on a reluctant Chernomyrdinby Yeltsin’s security chief Aleksandr Korzhakov, the weekly said.Chernomyrdin now hopes to fund his political bloc from the banks.
Zyuganov Gains as Rybkin Loses.