Sergei Glazyev, a Kremlin economic adviser, is being linked to the post a month before a deadline for his boss Vladimir Putin to nominate a successor to Sergei Ignatyev, who retires on June 23 after 11 years in the job.
Some insiders have been quick to write off Glazyev, who during his presidential run in 2004 lambasted Putin for running "a corrupt and irresponsible regime". Yet the speed with which Glazyev's star has risen since he endorsed the Russian leader's bid for a third Kremlin term a year ago has caught attention.
One high-ranking source in Moscow's liberal economic establishment said Glazyev is viewed favorably by both Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. A second source confirmed his status as a candidate and a third said he might get the job.