, and then meets with his cabinet to review their performance.

The president’s growth target is unrealistic. The proposed 1998 federal budget, which overestimates revenues and underestimates outlays, calls for a deficit of $21 billion or 4.7% of gross domestic product. That has helped to drive real interest rates up to about 18%, choking off business expansion. Foreign investment is unlikely to provide much help: foreign direct investment since 1991 has totaled a paltry $7 billion – $8 billion, while foreign portfolio investment is notoriously volatile. Russia’s new finance minister,