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    KUDRIN FORECASTS THAT BY 2008 INFLATION LEVEL IN RUSSIA WILL DROP TO 3%

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    KAZAN, 6 March - RIA Novosti. Acting vice-premier and acting Finance minister Aleksei Kudrin forecasts that by 2008 the inflation level in Russia will drop to 3%.

    In the course of the meeting of the State commission on preparation to celebrate 1000th anniversary of Kazan (capital of Tatarstan, a republic on the Volga river) Kudrin stated: "According to the adjusted forecasts, inflation in 2004 will amount to 10%, in 2005 - to 8.5% and by 2008 we will bring it to the level of 3%." He indicated that reduction of inflation, in particular, would allow reducing interest rates on mortgages.

    Kudrin stated that reduction of interest rates was one of the most important factors in development of the mortgage loan system in the country. He also named growth of income of population, reduction of long-term risks and banking risks among similarly significant factors.

    The acting vice-premier pointed out that "those several positions were considered by the government".

    Aleksei Kudrin reminded that the government prepared a package of draft laws on development of mortgage loan business. According to him, their adoption will give "a significant impetus to development of the mortgage system.

    Kudrin stressed that development of mortgage loan system was constantly monitored by the president as the priority issue. He indicated that "it was one of the programs for his next presidential term".

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