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The legislature of the Irkutsk Region, in East Siberia,
The legislature of the Irkutsk Region, in East Siberia, held a vote on Saturday to formally approve the current acting governor, Igor Yesipovsky, as governor.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev nominated Yesipovsky as governor of the Irkutsk Region on Friday. A total of 39 lawmakers out of 50 voted in favor of his candidature, while 8 voted against.

Yesipovsky had served as first deputy chairman of the industry committee in the lower house of Russia's parliament until April 2008, when then-president Vladimir Putin dismissed Alexander Tishanin as the Irkutsk Region's governor and appointed Yesipovsky as acting governor.

Shortly after his appointment, Yesipovsky told journalists: "Now it is necessary to look around and understand how seriously the financial crisis has affected the Irkutsk Region's economy, and then to take decisions."

The governor named among his key goals the construction of a new airport, estimated at over $1.8 billion, the federal Vilyuy highway (over $1.1 billion), and supplying the region with gas from the Kovytkinskoye gas condensate field.

Yesipovsky became the first governor of the enlarged Irkutsk Region, which came into existence on January 1, 2008, following the merger of two Siberian regions, the energy-rich Irkutsk Region and the largely agrarian Ust-Ordyn Buryat Autonomous Area.


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