The Russian government is jubilant at the news that, for the first time since market reforms began in January 1992, Russia has posted a rise in economic growth. GDP grew in January 1997 by 0.1 percent over the same period last year. Industrial output grew by 0.3 percent in the same period. (Itar-Tass, January 14) In other good news for the Russian economy, the State Tax Inspectorate announced that federal tax revenues in January were not only 26.3 percent higher than forecast, but were paid almost entirely in cash rather than, as was often the case in the past, in kind. (Russian Radio, February 10) Russia’s Central Bank celebrated the good news by reducing its annual refinancing rate from 48 to 42 percent, the lowest rate since the reforms began. (Finansovye izvestiya, February 11)
Albright Arrives in Europe; Begins Push for Unity on Enlargement.