The Russian councilof ministers approved a draft budget for 1996, Interfax reportedAugust 3. Based on certain optimistic assumptions–an inflationrate of 1.2 percent a month (compared to 5 percent a month now)and a ruble-dollar exchange rate of 4,500 to one–the deficitanticipates a deficit of 81.2 trillion rubles. While this wasthe earliest a Russian government has ever approved a budget sinceSoviet times, several Duma members complained that Prime MinisterViktor Chernomyrdin had nonetheless failed to transmit the budgetby August 1 as required by existing legislation. One group thatwas impressed by the numbers was the IMF; it agreed to releasethe latest $500 million tranche of credits to Moscow.
Russia Seen Heading Toward Latin America Scenario.