Chubais’ former boss, former Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, won election last week as chairman of the board of Gazprom, Russia’s largest firm. Gazprom controls the production, distribution, sale and export of natural gas. It accounts for about 15 percent of the country’s exports and 20 percent of its tax revenue. It is also a formidable force in Russia’s relations with Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova, where Gazprom is a large creditor and monopolist supplier. Chernomyrdin was oil and gas minister under Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and chairman of Gazprom from 1989-1992. He is believed to be one of Gazprom’s largest shareholders, though he has always denied holding equity in the company. Chernomyrdin as chairman replaces Rem Vyakhirev, who remains as CEO. Chernomyrdin’s return to Gazprom’s chairmanship apparently forecloses the possibility that Vyakhirev would use Gazprom’s assets to support the presidential candidacy of Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov.