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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Reformist Economist Knocks Communists' Economic Plan

A prominent Russian reformist economist said Thursday the economic plan published by the Communist Party ahead of the June 16 presidential election was full of factual errors and misconceptions.

The Communist program overstates Russia's post-Soviet decline and presents plans that contradict its own criticism, said Andrei Illarionov, director of the Institute for Economic Analysis.

The plan overstates drops in Russian car and oil production since 1991 and criticizes increased dependence on exports of some natural resources when such exports have fallen. At the same time the plan relies on some exports of natural resources, he said.

"It is as if the writers of the second half of the program forgot what was written in the first half," said Illarionov, who quit a post as adviser to Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin in 1994, protesting the slow pace of reform.

He said the Communist plan used "fantastic" growth projections that would require double-digit investment and production rises over the next two years to come true.

President Boris Yeltsin and Communist Party leader Gennady Zyuganov were similar in one way: they would both increase funding for industry, he said.

, and Yeltsin, by increasing monopolists' power in recent years, had partially subscribed to Communist plans to increase economic central planning, he said.

Both have made promises ahead of the June poll to increase social spending.

"The same level of political understanding is shown by those in power and those shooting at them," he said.