Index

DATE=5/16/2000 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT TITLE=RUSSIA POLITICS (L-OVERNIGHTER) NUMBER=2-262424 BYLINE=PETER HEINLEIN DATELINE=MOSCOW CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: Russia's lower house of parliament, the Duma, votes Wednesday on the nomination of Mikhail Kasyanov as prime minister. V-O-A Moscow Correspondent Peter Heinlein reports the nomination is expected to win easy approval. TEXT: On the eve of the Duma's confirmation vote, Mr. Kasyanov appeared confident of winning widespread support from lawmakers. Only the liberal Yabloko faction expressed reservations about supporting the nomination. Even Communists, who often opposed prime ministerial nominations during the era of former president Boris Yeltsin, seemed ready to give their consent. Mr. Kasyanov, a 42-year old economist who also serves as finance minister, held meetings with Communist lawmakers Monday and Tuesday to explain his economic strategy. Afterward, he told reporters the meeting had produced broad agreement on the direction of the economy. /// KASYANOV ACT - IN RUSSIAN - FADE UNDER /// He says, "We have the same views on several things, such as the need for investment to stimulate economic growth." Mr. Kasyanov said some differences of opinion had also come up. But Deputy Communist leader Valentin Kuptsov expressed satisfaction with the discussions. /// KUPTSOV ACT - IN RUSSIAN - FADE UNDER /// He says, "Our faction will talk it over, but I'm sure Mr. Kasyanov's nomination will be approved." The leader of one pro-Kasyanov faction predicts the nomination will receive 300 or so votes among the 450 Duma members, far more than the simple majority needed for confirmation. Once the prime minister is in place, he is likely to move quickly to fill out the rest of his cabinet. That could happen as early as Thursday. No radical changes are anticipated. Mr. Kasyanov is expected to work closely with President Vladimir Putin, who appointed him hours after being sworn into office May seventh. (Signed) NEB/PFH/JWH/JP 16-May-2000 13:10 PM EDT (16-May-2000 1710 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .