MOSCOW, September 27. /TASS/. Representatives of the four factions of the State Duma, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, on Monday struck an informal "package agreement", which envisions parity distribution of committee heads’ posts in the 7th Duma.
The number of committees fell from 30 to 26: the participants of talks agreed that the number of committees should be optimized.
The Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) finally achieved chairmanship of one of the key committees - the international affairs committee - a post the faction insisted on back five years ago.
United Russia party members fully took into account Russian President Vladimir Putin’s call to preserve in the new Duma the previous distribution of seats between factions in committees (50/50) and thus displayed goodwill regarding the opposition, which after the Duma elections substantially cut its presence in the parliament.
"We will have 13 committees," United Russia faction leader Vladimir Vasilyev said.
Vasilyev confirmed that the participants of today’s meeting agreed to "curtailment of four committees". In particular, the constitutional legislation committee and the civil, criminal, arbitration and procedural legislation committee will be merged.
A United Russia representative will also lead the education and science committee, he continued, recalling that earlier, the chamber had a separate committee on science and science intensive technology.
The committees on natural resources, property and property relations have been merged, just as the transport and construction committees, Vasilyev said.
The committee on environmental protection (earlier part of the natural resources committee) and the defense committee (both were earlier led by the Communist Party) will now be led by United Russia.
Like earlier, the constitutional majority deputies will lead the committee on budget and taxes, the regulations and organizational committee, the security and anti-corruption committee, the energy committee, the nationalities committee and the culture committee. Besides, United Russia got the healthcare committee (which in the previous Duma was led by the LDPR).
Representatives of the Communist Party will lead five committees in the 7th Duma: the committee on CIS affairs, Eurasian integration and ties with compatriots, the committee on public associations and religious organizations, the agrarian committee, the committee on family, women and children, as well as the committee on regional policy and North and Far East problems, Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov said.
The Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) will get in the 7th Duma the posts of chairs in five committees, the head of the party’s Supreme Council, Igor Lebedev, said after inter-faction consultations.
The LDPR led four committees in the 6th State Duma: the healthcare committee, the sports and physical culture committee, the CIS affairs committee and the committee on public associations and religious organizations.
Lebedev said LDPR deputies will hold leading posts in the new Duma in the committee on economic policy, industry, innovation development and entrepreneurship, the committee on federal structure and local self-government issues, the committee on labor and social policy and veteran affairs and the committee on physical culture, sports and youth affairs, as well as the international affairs committee, which in the previous Dumas was led by United Russia deputies.
First deputy head of the A Just Russia faction Mikhail Yemelyanov, on his part, said his faction’s deputies would lead three committees - on financial market, on housing policy and information policy.
Thus, compared to the previous Duma, the United Russia party and A Just Russia now have two committees fewer. The Communists, which earlier had six committees, lost one of them, whereas the LDPR, on the contrary, has one additional post.
The ruling United Russia party obtained 343 seats in the 450-seat State Duma in the September 18 elections, securing a constitutional majority. The Communist Party got 42 seats and the LDPR 39 seats. The party A Just Russia will have 23 seats. The Homeland and Civil Platform obtained one seat each. One seat went to self-nominated candidate Vladislav Reznik, who has already joined the United Russia faction.
The 7th State Duma is scheduled to hold its first session on October 5.