RUSSIAN-U.S. HI-TECH VENTURES GARNER SUSPICION. "Delovoi Vtornik" on 4 August charged that the U.S. company Lockheed Martin colluded with the U.S. National Security Agency to construct a satellite so powerful that its true purpose, the newspaper argued, must be surveillance. According to "Delovoi Vtornik," as soon as Russian specialists from the company Intersputnik voiced their suspicions about the company's true intentions, Lockheed Martin decided it no longer needed a Russian partner. Meanwhile, "The Washington Post" reported on 8 August that the U.S. State Department has ordered Boeing to suspend work on a project to develop commercial satellites with Russian and Ukrainian rocket manufacturers because sensitive U.S. space information had been passed along to Russian and Ukrainian engineers. JAC

WORLD BANK TO CONSIDER AID TO UKRAINE AFTER IMF LOAN APPROVAL. The World Bank will consider financing two projects in Ukraine worth $300 million each as soon as the IMF approves its $2.2 billion loan to Kyiv, Reuters reported on 10 August. The World Bank's Kyiv mission chief said the projects will support Ukraine's financial sector and business development. The World Bank suspended its financial assistance to Ukraine earlier this year, following a similar decision by the IMF. The IMF board of directors is expected to discuss its $2.2 billion three-year loan program to Ukraine in late August. JM

PRICE OF UKRAINIAN SUGAR HALVES UNDER TAX PAYMENT PRESSURE. Owing to recent government pressure to pay tax and pension fund arrears (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 6 and 10 August 1998), Ukrainian sugar refineries have been forced to pledge sugar at 500 hryvni ($240) a ton as security against the payment of their debts to the pension fund. The average price of sugar is currently 1,110 hryvni a ton, but the Aval Bank, which manages the Pension Fund, refuses to accept sugar as security at higher prices. According to Ukrainian News, this could result in a sharp drop in sugar prices once the sugarrefining season begins. Sugar refineries currently owe the Pension Fund some 3 million hryvni. JM

TATAR PRESIDENT IN KYIV. Visiting Kyiv on 10 August to attend President Leonid Kuchma's birthday celebrations, Mintimer Shaimiev held informal talks on expanding economic cooperation with his Moldovan and Latvian counterparts, Petru Lucinschi and Guntis Ulmanis, RFE/RL's Kazan bureau reported. Shaimiev told journalists that Tatarstan will continue to supply Ukraine with oil and oil products. He added that Russian Premier Sergei Kirienko is expected to visit Kazan later this week. LF