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New treaty between Russia and South Ossetia to be ready by late January 2015 - Surkov

The work on a new treaty on allied relations and integration between Russia and South Ossetia will be over by late January 2015, Russian president's aide Vladislav Surkov, who is currently on a working visit to South Ossetia, said on Monday.

"We are working on the new treaty. Its aim is to strengthen integration between our countries in the sphere of security, to improve the welfare and social protection of South Ossetia's citizens. I think the document will be agreed by late January," he said.

He said that the new treaty when signed would set tasks for the two countries , which would require additional financing.

"The treaty will entail additional liabilities, including material, and Russia is ready to sustain them," Surkov stressed. "The difficult economic situation in Russia will be no obstacle for fulfilling its liabilities, since we cannot let down our strategic partners.".

Investment programme in South Ossetia

The investment programme aiming at promoting socio-economic development of South Ossetia is proceeding as scheduled, Vladislav Surkov said.

"It is pleasing to note that the investment programme is so far being implemented as scheduled. I am saying 'so far' because three facilities are yet to be completed by the New Year. However there is confidence that it will be done," he said.

"Twenty facilities have already been built. It is exactly as planned. Neither the terms nor the cost have been revised. Those who run construction businesses know it only too well that this is a rare thing in a normal situation, and the situation in South Ossetia's building sector has been, putting it mildly, ambiguous… That is why, today I can say I am satisfied with how the investment programme is being fulfilled," the Kremlin official said.

He reassured that Russia would continue its financial assistance to South Ossetia, first of all, in the framework of the implementation of socio-economic programmes for the next three years.

"We can sacrifice some of our domestic tasks but will never let down our strategic partners," he stressed. "Facilities targeted in the investment programme for 2015-2017 and financianf of the current socio-economic activity will be fulfilled."

The investment programme for the socio-economic development of South Ossetia for 2014 was developed and endorsed by the Russia-South Ossetian intergovernmental commission in late 2013. A sum of more than 2.8 billion roubles /over 50 million U.S. dollars/ was allocated from the Russian budget to finance this programme.

[Source: Itar Tass, Tskhinval, 22Dec14]

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The Question of South Ossetia
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