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    RUSSIA'S TERRITORY IS TO BE DIVIDED IN LINE WITH NEW WATER CODE

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    MOSCOW, February 19, 2004. (RIA Novosti correspondent Andrei Malosolov). In accordance with a new Water Code of Russia, the entire territory of the country will be divided in 10 river basin districts (RBD).

    These proposals have been included in a new wording of the Water Code of the Russian Federation elaborated by the Ministry of Economic Development which is to be considered at a regular meeting of the Cabinet on Thursday.

    The major task set in the Water Code will be the improvement of the mechanism of implementation of the basin principles of managing the water bodies, including the setting up of river basin councils. In accordance with this item, the entire territory of Russia will be divided into river basin districts which will include main water bodies - one or several basins of rivers flowing into the seas or lakes.

    The water Code envisages the creation of ten river basin districts: the Baltic RBD with the rivers Neva, Narva and others flowing into the Baltic sea, the Barents-Belomor RBD (the Northern Dvina, Pechora and other rivers), the Don RBD (the Don, Dnieper and other rivers), the Kuban RBD ( the Kuban and the rivers of the Caucasian Black Sea coast), the West Caspian RBD ( the Terek, Sulak, Kuma , etc.), the Volga-Caspian RBD (the Volga, Urals and other rivers), the Ob RBD (the Ob and other rivers flowing into the Kara Sea), the Yenissei RBD (the Yenissei and other rivers flowing into the ocean in the area of the Taimyr Peninsula, the East-Siberian RBD (the Lena, Indigirka, Kolyma and other rivers), the Amur-Pacific RBD (the Amur and other rivers flowing into the Pacific Ocean).

    In line with the Water Code the federal ownership of water bodies will be established, with the exception of detached water bodies which can be in the state or municipal ownership, and in the possession of citizens and companies. The payments for the use of water bodies, which will not be in the form of taxes, will be forwarded directly to the budget of the Russian Federation.The rates of fee for the use of water bodies for various categories of water users and the procedure of the non-tax payment's calculation and deductions will be established by the federal law.

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