31 Aug 2010 18:12

Pikalyovo conflict will not be replayed - Putin

NORILSK, Russia. August 31 (Interfax) - Prime Minister Vladimir Putin assured workers employed by tthe Russian nickel and palladium producer MMC Norilsk Nickel that a current dispute between shareholders would not set off a social conflict similar to the turmoil in Pikalyovo, Leningrad region, last year.

"The conflict within the group of shareholders stems from a struggle over how to solve individual problems and cannot have consequences similar to those in Pikalyovo," Putin said in answering a question during a meeting with Norilsk Nickel workers.

"Today I did not even discuss that matter, but I drew attention to the way they were distributing their profits," he said.

Putin said that, at the end of the day, the shareholders' dispute had helped solve serious problems for the Norilsk Nickel facility in Norilsk and for the city itself.

The latest social agreements met no objections from any of the shareholders, he said. "They were not being greedy or stingy and immediately accepted those agreements."

No parallels with the Pikalyovo conflict would hold any water as the Norilsk facility is not divided into mutually competing parts, Putin said.

"Today we are keeping the situation there under control, and I hope they will have the common sense not to bring the situation to the point it reached a while ago," he said.