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Fifth International business conference RPMG-2002

To the participants of the Fifth International Business Conference "Russian precious metals and gemstones market: current conditions and prospects"

Dear participants of the conference,

On behalf of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly please let me greet you on the occasion of this significant and representative venue, which has been initiated within the Saint-Petersburg Economic Forum. I consider that the discussion of how the diamond, gold and platinum industries will function after Russia's accession to the WTO is very appropriate and important.

The development of civilized market relations in the field of mining, production and circulation of precious metals and gemstones, along with further production of jewellery, technical, medicinal and other goods, is of extreme importance for all the Russian economy and is exercising a strong influence on the general social and economic condition of this country.

At present the leaders of this industrial sector feel themselves rather confident on the world market. Other market players are prepared to offer to the foreign partners quite competitive products, some of them based on high technologies. But unfortunately it will take time, as first of all the persisting contradictions and bureaucratic obstacles have to be eliminated.

In my view, the nearest tasks are clear for everyone. It is urging to put order into the legislation by eliminating all the contradictions, which put brakes to the market development. The limitations deriving from the official structures should be reviewed, because they are mostly just rudiments remaining from the totalitarian past.

Today the supporters of the market economy have the same target: the Russian market must get the maximum of economic freedom and become part of the world market. Therefore we can only support the intention of the representatives of business and science to start here, at the conference, a direct dialogue with the authorities, whose duty is to follow up on the happenings in evolution of the market relations in gold, platinum and diamond sectors.

Wishing all of you much success,

Chairman of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation S. Mironov


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