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State Help on Mortgages

First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov is positive about the prospect of making home loans affordable for the population.

"I cannot say that it will be free, but to put the provision of [mortgage] credit into a concrete framework and make it both very secure and affordable is an achievable task," Shuvalov said Friday.

He said the authorities could use funds accumulated in "pension funds and the National Welfare Fund" for the initiative.

"We would like, of course, for it not to be nonrepayable aid," Shuvalov said, "but rather have the money we provide paid returned to us, even if only in the long run."

He said that the money will be provided either in the form of loans or through special financing mechanisms to local municipalities and government bodies.

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