Almost one billion dollars to be returned to Russia by debtor countries in 2004

It is supposed that in 2004 foreign debtor countries will return to Russia 978.6 million dollars in repayment of the loans granted by the governments of the USSR and the Russian Federation.

This figure is envisaged in the draft federal budget for 2004.

The amount of debt repayments is calculated on the basis of the payment schedules in keeping with the effective intergovernmental agreements and also agreements that have been initialed in the past few years and are to be signed in 2004, a RIA Novosti correspondent reports citing explanatory statements made by the Finance Ministry as regards the draft budget.

However, it should be taken into account that a number of debtor countries are among the poorest in the world and cannot afford to service their foreign debts in full measure, the ministry's statement says.

According to the Finance Ministry, there is a probability of rescheduling their debts in the framework of the relevant agreements with the Paris Club.

At the same time the utmost amount of allocations for granting credits to foreign states and for investments outside Russia, envisaged in the draft 2004 budget, is 619.35 million dollars.

This money will be spent mainly on settling the accounts of Russian organizations for technical assistance to other countries.

The 2004 technical aid program, in particular, provides for rendering aid to Bulgaria, India and China in the construction of nuclear power stations ther, the delivery of power engineering equipment for the hydroelectric power stations being built in Vietnam, financing the contracts for the construction and modernization of economic facilities in Cuba, and for building hydro-technical facilities in Tunisia.

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