Russia’s State Duma is meeting today to debate the package of austerity measures that the government says is essential to rescue the country from its financial crisis. Addressing the assembly this morning, Prime Minister Sergei Kirienko urged the Duma to approve the package of some twenty bills before starting its summer recess on July 16. Duma Speaker Gennady Seleznev predicted yesterday that the Duma will approve most of the bills the government is proposing. These include measures to raise taxes and further reduce government spending. (Russian agencies, June 30; BBC, July 1)
NO CHANGE AT RUSSIA’S GAZPROM.