| YABLOKO opposes the amendments to the law "On
the Basis of the Federal Housing Policy" adopted by the State
Duma in the third reading and the arrival of large monopolies on
the housing and communal services sphere.
At the end of last week the head of the YABLOKO faction Grigory
Yavlinsky stated that this document would lead to a 100% increase
in tariffs and did not provide for restoration of the housing and communal services sector.
All the main mechanisms enabling monopolists to increase prices
for the [rental of] flats and tariffs for communal services are
maintained in this law.
Yavlinsky also indicated that the introduction of such large
monopolists as RAO UES (Unified Energy Systems) and OAO Gazprom
merely represented a way of obtaining all the remaining funds
and money available to the sector. This is the worst possible
outcome for the housing and communal sector.
According to Yavlinsky, the crux of this approach can be summed
up as follows. Owing to constant tariff increases, in particular
electricity prices and pressures from rolling blackouts, make
the whole sector a debtor of RAO UES; and then privatize the key
structures of the housing and communal services sector and the
whole infrastructure of the sector in general. Then people living
in the flats will suddenly turn in debtors of RAO UES (once all
the structures in the sector have been privatized by these huge
monopolies) and be confronted by the recently adopted new law
which stipulates that they can be driven out of their flats.
This will become first and foremost a tool of political pressure.
"It is clear, states the newsletter from the press service
of the YABLOKO faction, - that the regions with which RAO UES
has concluded an agreement represent the largest electoral regions.
This represents a means of obtaining political power in the country."
and Communal Services Reform