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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russia to Repay Debt to Prague

PRAGUE -- Czech and Russian officials have agreed on conditions for the payment of $3.5 billion of Russian debt left from Soviet bloc times. Czech Deputy Finance Minister Vladimir Rudlovcak and Andrei Vavilov, his Russian counterpart, agreed that the first installment of $50 million owed to Czech companies will be paid in the "nearest future," with another $312 million to come before the end of 1995 in various commodities. Payments on the $1.3-billion loan given to the former Soviet Union by the Communist government of the now dissolved Czechoslovak federation will start coming in 1996, state news agency CTK reported. The total Russian debt of over $5 billion toward the former Czechoslovak federation was divided at a ratio of 2:1 between the successor states, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, after the federation's split in 1993. Conditions of debt payments to Slovakia are not yet known. The repayment of $1.844 billion in trade deficit and interest accumulated in 1990 and 1991 was rescheduled to start in 1999, CTK said. Rudlovcak said Czechs would prefer payments in the form of oil and natural gas, but Russians resisted the proposal. The deal is to be signed after it is approved by the Czech government within three weeks.