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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release April 4, 1993

WASHINGTON, April 4 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is a fact sheet on private sector development components of the U.S. assistance package for Russia announced at the summit in Vancouver:

The U.S. private sector assistance program supports Russia's historic transition to a market-based economy, expanded trade and investment opportunities, and emergence of an indigenous private sector. U.S. assistance reinforces Russia's strategy to transfer state assets to productive private sector use, and to catalyze small and medium business development to create new jobs. Whenever possible, the U.S. assistance program links American businesses with Russian counterparts to transfer skills and create lasting market relationships.

Russian-American Enterprise Fund: The Fund will target loans and investments to create and expand small and medium enterprises. It will support Russian businesses and joint ventures with U.S. firms that disseminate western business knowhow and practices. Loans and investments will seek to increase employment, develop capital markets, generate foreign exchange, encourage private foreign investment, and support privatization. The Fund will also seek to demonstrate that good business investments are compatible with sound environmental practices. ($50 million in 1993)

Privatization: Privatization is the driving force behind economic reform in Russia. This initiative reinforces nearly every aspect of the privatization program that is giving all Russians their first opportunity to become private shareholders. U.S. assistance supports enterprise auctions, privatization manuals, public education on private ownership, and legal, economic and logistical advice to local privatization committees. Technical assistance for investment funds, stock exchanges, prudent
regulation and business support organizations will help create a fair and competitive marketplace. ($60 million in 1993)

Bankers Training: A modern banking system and stable financial markets are indispensable to enterprise restructuring. Officials of U.S. commercial banks, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and other specialists will train at least 250 Russian banking executives. American experts will work with Russian counterparts to introduce new deposit mechanisms for business and household savings; functioning checking accounts; interbank credit and reserve lending systems; and an auction market in government securities that will facilitate relatively non-inflationary financing of public deficits. ($5 million)

Fiscal Sector Reform: Effective decentralization and privatization will require new tax and expenditure systems for local and regional governments. Technical assistance in the fiscal area will help local and regional governments design and implement fiscal
structures, including revenue systems needed to finance social services and other budgetary requirements currently financed by state enterprises. Assistance will start with Moscow oblast and will be targeted at regions making significant privatization progress. ($4.4 million)

Russian-American Agribusiness Partnership: This activity pairs U.S. agribusinesses with Russian partners to help private farmers, enterprises and reform-oriented institutions create a market-driven food system. Technical assistance and training by U.S.
agribusinesses will help break bottlenecks between producers and consumers, and create efficient input delivery systems. U.S. agribusinesses will introduce U.S. standards for harvesting, processing and distribution. Under the project, they will invest approximately $60 million of their own funds. ($20 million)

Farmer-to-Farmer Program: This activity will link over 300 American volunteer farmers with farmers in Russia in order to povide direct, practical agricultural marketing experience and know-how. These volunteers will build on the work of 80 volunteers already in Russia. Their technical expertise will help new private farmers learn the skills needed to operate in a market economy, improve crop quality, reduce losses, and respond to consumer demand. ($5 million)

Eurasia Foundation: The Foundation is a new, independent grant-making and technical assistance fund established with U.S. Government financing. It will encourage collaboration with and contributions from private funding sources. The Foundation will support innovative, field-based programs throughout the NIS in areas such as management training, economics education, public policy advice, independent print and broadcast media, and science and technology development. ($4 million for Russia)

Total Private Sector Development Program: $148.4 million in 1993.

/U.S. Newswire 202-347-2770/