Despite Fall In Oil Prices Russia's 2002 Federal Budget Will Not Be Adjusted

Russia's Finance Ministry is preparing no proposals to adjust the 2002 draft federal budget in view of a fall in world prices, ministry spokesman Gennady Yezhov told RIA Novosti. He underscored that when a 2002 budget was being prepared, an unfavourable world economic situation was allowed for, with all budget spending based on the Urals blend price of 18.5 dollars per barrel quoted at world petroleum exchanges. Concern about meeting the expenses, including payment of interest on external debts, may arise only if oil prices are set at a much lower level than this and for "a considerable period", the spokesman said. According to him, the government is planning to obtain about 8.5 billion dollars in extra revenue this year, and that is the "safety margin" for the budgets of coming years.

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