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ECONOMICS ADVISER CLAIMS HE CONVINCED PUTIN TO RENATIONALIZE NATURAL WEALTH. Academician Dmitrii Lvov, an economics consultant to the Russian government and long-standing advocate of state control over natural-resource revenues, told "Komsomolskaya pravda" on 17 September that, under the impact of his ideas, President Vladimir Putin is inclined to support increased state control over revenues from the export of mineral resources. This proposal has been incorporated into the amendments to the Mineral Resources Code drafted by deputy head of the presidential administration Dmitrii Kozak (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 12 September 2002). Lvov said that just 5 percent of the nation's gross revenue is generated by labor. Twenty percent is produced by capital and investment, and a full 75 percent is generated through the exploitation of natural resources. He said that much of that 75 percent is currently going directly into the pockets of a small group of oligarchs. Lvov proposed that the state take control of these funds and use them to finance education, health care, and housing, as well as to reduce taxes. In Lvov's words, Putin -- who wrote his dissertation in economics on the topic of "the rational use of natural resources" -- was very receptive to his ideas. VY

UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT SAYS OPPOSITION PROTESTS MAY SCARE AWAY INVESTORS... President Leonid Kuchma said in Odesa on 18 January that such protest actions as that in Kyiv on 16 September (see "RFE/RL Poland, Belarus, and Ukraine Report," 17 September 2002) may frighten away potential investors in the country's economy, UNIAN reported. "Ukraine primarily needs political stability. People will come to Ukraine with their capital only if they see peace and order here," Kuchma said. The Ukrainian president also said he does not accept protesters who put forward "not demands, but ultimatums." JM

...AS OPPOSITION APPEALS TO WORLD LEADERS TO 'IGNORE' HIM. The Fatherland Party press service told UNIAN that an appeal to world leaders to "ignore" President Kuchma has been sent to nearly 50 countries. The appeal, which was adopted during the 16 September antipresidential rally in Kyiv, calls on world leaders not to make political contacts with Kuchma "in exchange for economic and political concessions" from him. It also urges the world's heads of state not to invite Kuchma to international summits and official meetings. JM

COURTS IN KYIV PUNISH ARRESTED PROTESTERS. Kyiv-based courts have punished the 64 people arrested after the dismantling of a tent camp that was set up near the presidential administration building on 17 September (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 17 September 2002), UNIAN reported on 18 September, quoting an Interior Ministry official. Fifty-one demonstrators were jailed for terms of one to 10 days, while the others were fined or given warnings. JM

UKRAINE HARVESTS 36.7 MILLION TONS OF GRAIN IN 2002. Ukrainian farmers collected 36.7 million tons of grain this year, UNIAN reported on 18 September, quoting Agricultural Ministry Secretary Serhiy Melnyk. Melnyk was reporting on the 2002 harvest results to the parliamentary Commission for Agrarian Policy and Land Relations. Melnyk said this year's average grain yield was 2.82 tons per hectare. Meanwhile, commission head Ivan Tomych predicted that nearly 70 percent of Ukrainian farms and agricultural enterprises will suffer fiscal losses in 2002. According to Tomych, the losses will be due to a fall in domestic prices for grain, meat, and milk. In 2001, 7,320 farms and agricultural enterprises in Ukraine were profitable (56.9 percent of their total number), compared with 65.5 percent in 2000. JM

TIRASPOL NEGOTIATIONS BEGIN, 'BLACKOUT' INSTITUTED ON COVERAGE. The new round of negotiations on settling the Transdniester conflict began in Tiraspol on 18 September and lasted late into the night, Infotag reported. The heads of the negotiating teams and the three mediators -- the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Russia, and Ukraine -- refused to speak to journalists during the breaks or after the talks were adjourned. OSCE mission head David Schwartz said the sides have started what he called "the active phase" of the negotiations, and that statements to the media could obstruct their work. He said the media will be informed only "after concrete results are in place." But a Moldovan diplomat told Infotag that "before such results appear, the road is long.... This meeting...was not significantly different from those held in Chisinau." MS