Russian Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Khristenko announced on Thursday that the government was intending to identify the main parameters and principles of co-operation with the World Bank in December. A co-operation programme for the 2002-3 period will be ready by March next year. Khristenko held a meeting on Thursday morning with Peter Woicke, managing director and executive vice president of the International Financial Corporation, which is part of the World Bank. According to Khristenko, Russian-World Bank co-operation is currently being diversified. Both sides are aiming to minimise the use of budget-substituting loans; instead, the private sector will be supported through the independent crediting of enterprises. It has been proposed that in the future the government will guarantee operations on non-commercial risks that serve to lower the value of loans and the risks themselves and give firms the opportunity to take out loans from foreign banks. The vice-premier confirmed that the government would be following this strategy to support the private sector.