UKRAINE CONTINUES LOBBYING FOR ROLE IN CASPIAN OIL EXPORT. Two prominent Ukrainian officials have again argued the merits of transporting some Caspian oil to international markets via Ukrainian territory rather than through the planned Baku-Ceyhan pipeline. Following a meeting of the Ukrainian-Polish Consultative Council, Security and Defense Council Secretary Vladimir Gorbulin pointed out on 3 November that transportation costs per metric ton of crude via Ukraine would be $10 cheaper than via Turkey. In Baku, Ukrainian ambassador Boris Alekseenko said that the Odessa-Brody pipeline, which links up with the Druzhba pipeline, would be able to transport 40 million tons per year on completion late in 1999. He said that Ukraine could refine half of this quantity domestically. Alekseenko also endorsed proposals for routing the planned Baku-Ceyhan pipeline via the Georgian Black Sea port of Supsa and the Turkish Black Sea port of Samsun, according to ANS-Press. LF

UKRAINIAN COAL MINERS DEMAND UNPAID WAGES, SUBSIDIES. Thousands of miners demonstrated throughout Ukraine on 4 November to demand overdue wages and more government subsidies to the coal industry. Some 1,000 miners picketed the parliament and government building in Kyiv, while another 5,000 held a rally in Donetsk. Organizers said some 10,000 miners were on strike at their mines to support the demands of the demonstrators. Mykhaylo Volynets, a coal mining trade union leader, told Reuters that unless the government pays overdue wages to the miners, they will launch a "bigger nationwide strike in December for an indefinite period." The government owes the miners 2.4 billion hryvni (some $700 million) in back wages. JM

IMF WARNS UKRAINE AGAINST PRINTING MONEY. John OdlingSmee, the IMF's negotiator in talks with Ukraine, told journalists on 4 November in Kyiv that Ukraine should not print money in order to solve its problem of unpaid wages and pensions, AP and Ukrainian News reported. Odling-Smee added that he did not discuss the issue of money emission at his meeting with Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma the same day. Kuchma aide Valeriy Lytvytskyy, who earlier suggested that Ukraine will discuss monetary emission with the IMF (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 4 November 1998), told Ukrainian News on 4 November that Kuchma "opposes the unacceptable inflationary consequences of any emission decision." JM