Belarus raises Russian oil tariff

July 1, 2010 at 11:16 AM

MINSK, Belarus, July 1 (UPI) -- The price for pumping Russian oil through the transit network in Belarus is more than 12 percent higher as of Thursday, officials in Minsk said.

Belarus introduced a 12.7 percent rate hike for the pumping of Russian oil through the country, Russian news agency ITAR-Tass reports. The Belarusian Economics Ministry approved a measure at the end of April to raise the tariff.

The tariff is roughly $1.60 for every ton of crude oil transported around 60 miles through Belarus. The previous tariff was $1.42.

Meanwhile, Vladimir Semashko, the first deputy prime minister of Russia, said he expected Minsk would sign off on a new gas contract Thursday.

Russian energy monopoly Gazprom last week cut gas supplies to Belarus by 15 percent, threatening to reduce supplies by 85 percent if Minsk didn't come forward with its $200 million in gas debt. Minsk argued that Moscow was obligated to a similar amount in transit fees.

The sides settled the issue last week.

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