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NEW YORK, November 16./ TASS/. Alexei Ulyukayev, Russia’s former Finance Minister and now chief of the Center for Strategic Research, said on Tuesday he sees no political aspect in the arrest of Russia’s former Minister of Economic Development Aleksey Ulyukayev and doubts he could have impacted privatization of oil company Bashneft.
"I see no political motives here. I even see no resistance to privatization. Ulyukayev took no final decision on Bashneft. So, I have big doubts Ulyukayev could have influenced this decision," Kudrin said on the sidelines of an investment forum in New York, commenting on Ulyukayev’s arrest on bribe-taking charges.
However he said bribe-taking charges against a minister are quite a dramatic event for Russia. "Of course, it is a dramatic event for Russia, and first of all, for Russia’s government as he was one of the key officials dealing with rules of doing business. Hence, bribe-taking charges at such a level cast a shadow on the entire system," Kudrin said, adding that Russia’s Investigations Committee should be open on that case.
"We know that even law enforcement agencies may make mistakes. We don’t have complete confidence in some steps. We know it from the example of other officials who were released after arrest and relieved of all charges. We are waiting for further steps and explanations from the Investigations Committee. We would like it to be open and inform us," he said, adding that the lack of certainty is impacting the investment climate in Russia.