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    MOSCOW, March 9, 2004. (RIA Novosti) - The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) gives the right to the largest Russian bank Sberbank to act as the General Sponsor and Official Bank of the ROC at the 38th Olympic Games.

    This was disclosed on Tuesday at the official ceremony of the agreement signing by Chairman of Board of Directors and President of Russian Sberbank Andrey Kazmin.

    The agreement was signed by Mr. Kazmin and ROC President Leonid Tyagachyov.

    "The signing of the agreement is of the great importance for the ROC. Our joint work will help to promote the Olympic movement in Russia," Mr. Tyagachyov noted.

    According to him, the forthcoming games in Greece will be not easy for the Russian national team. "We will have a tough battle for the gold. I hope that together with Sberbank we'll create a favorable moral atmosphere in the Russian national team," Mr. Tyagachyov said, at the same time refusing to forecast on the number of gold medals Russian athletes would bring from Athens.

    Mr. Kazmin in his turn said that he is aware of the current problems in Russian sports. "It is scarcely possible to solve them all at the same time, but we are completely ready to assist the Russian Olympic Committee in solution of this issue," he said. "I'm not speaking of any benefits for Sberbank. We were deeply honored that the Russian Olympic Committee signed the agreement with us giving us the right to act as the General Sponsor of the Russian National Olympic team," Mr. Kazmin added.

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