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    DOMODEDOVO (Moscow region), February 10th, 2004 (RIA Novosti correspondent) - The majority of State Duma deputies agree that the amendments banning citizens from withdrawing fixed deposits from banks are immature.

    Pavel Medvedev, deputy chairman of the Duma committee for credit organisations and financial markets, for one, expressed this opinion to lower house deputies. In his words, some representatives of the banking community stand behind this initiative.

    "The current Civil Code allows citizens to withdraw money from a fixed deposit," said Medvedev. In economic terms, it would be better to have the money deposited for two years remain on the account for as long, and let bankers transfer the money to the real sector." "At first, however, we should calm the population and only afterwards introduce such amendments," said the deputy. "This can have negative consequences for bankers, because citizens would be scared to deposit money for two years," he added.

    Pavel Krasheninnikov, chairman of the committee for the criminal and civil legislation, agrees that "a citizen should have the right to withdraw his/her money." Vice Speaker of the Duma Georgy Boos also sees no "economic or civil expediency for such a mechanism," though "theoretically, in a long-term prospect," he did not exclude the making such an amendment to the law.

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