Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 116

Russia’s Democratic Choice, the party led by former prime minister Yegor Gaidar which includes First Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly Chubais among its members, was in a jubilant mood yesterday. The party assembled to review the first hundred days of the "new" Russian government — that is, the government as reconstituted since mid-March, when Chubais and Boris Nemtsov joined the cabinet. Gaidar said the economic program the government is now carrying out is that of his party. (NTV, June 12) He also said that, even though Grigory Yavlinsky’s Yabloko movement had decided not to join the government, the presence of Nemtsov, who is closely associated with Yavlinsky, represents a triumph of unity for Russia’s democrats.

Both Gaidar and Chubais, who also addressed the meeting, stressed the importance at the present stage of introducing a new tax code. Economists at Gaidar’s Institute of Economics of Transition worked not only on the program adopted by the new government last April, but also on drafting the new tax code which is now before the Duma. Saying that tax reform is even more crucial to the government’s financial plans than its revision of the 1997 federal budget, Chubais urged parliament to adopt the code before it recesses on June 24. Chubais has warned that President Yeltsin may dissolve the parliament if the Duma impedes the reform.

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