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Belarus To Increase Transit Tariffs For Russian Oil --> The Russian oil terminal at Primorsk, near St. Petersburg (ITAR-TASS) February 6, 2007 -- Belarus has announced it will sharply increase transit tariffs for Russian oil this month.

The Economy Ministry said that as of February 15, oil-transit tariffs will range from $1.29 to $3.50 per metric ton for every 100 kilometers. That's up from the current range of $0.41 to $0.60.

Relations between Russia and Belarus have been strained recently because of disputes over gas and oil prices.

A previous attempt by Minsk to impose new fees on the shipment of Russian oil across Belarus led last month to a disruption in Russian oil supplies to Western Europe.

Semyon Vainshtok, the president of Russia's state pipeline monopoly, Transneft, said the company on February 5 approved a plan for a pipeline from a point near the Russian-Belarusian border to Primorsk on the Baltic Sea, bypassing Belarus.

(compiled from agency reports)

Russia And Belarus

The main Moscow-Minsk railway line(Tass)

TO MERGE OR NOT TO MERGE: For over a decade, Moscow and Minsk have been working on a project to form a single state, the Russia-Belarus Union. However, every time the two countries seem on the verge of making progress, one or the other steps back, leaving the entire effort in doubt.


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RFE/RL's coverage of Belarus. RFE/RL's coverage of Russia.