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    PUTIN URGES PROMPT REACTION TO GRAIN MARKET SITUATION

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    MOSCOW, February 2, 2004 (RIA Novosti correspondent) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has called on the cabinet to react promptly to the grain market situation. He voiced such an appeal at his conference with the cabinet members today.

    The president described the growing domestic prices for grain as the most acute current problem.

    "We talked about such a possibility last year, we spoke about the need to take operative measures in this respect. Nonetheless, these issues have not been tackled promptly," said the head of state.

    "Do you know how much the prices have soared in some regions? They have doubled," said Vladimir Putin.

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