It appears that the US government is resolved to sticking with a competitive tender plan to cover future fuel supplies at the Manas Transit Center in Kyrgyzstan, despite a Kyrgyz provisional government preference to set up a joint venture involving a state-run entity and the Russian-state-run Gazprom conglomerate.
Officials in Bishkek portray the joint-venture option as having two big benefits – limiting the possibility for corrupt practices and bringing in extra revenue to Kyrgyz state coffers. Involving Gazprom, Kyrgyz officials contend, could generate an additional $60 million in income for the state.
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Deirdre Tynan is a Bishkek-based reporter specializing in Central Asian affairs.