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Russia's foreign debt down 14.6% to $44.4 bln in 2007

MOSCOW, February 15 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's foreign debt declined 14.6%, year on year, in 2007 to $44.4 billion, the Finance Ministry said on Friday.

Russia's foreign debt consists of the $37.2 bln new Russian debt that emerged after 1992 and the $7.2 bln Soviet-era liabilities inherited by Russia after the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991.

As of January 1, 2008, Russia's new foreign debt included loans from international financial institutions ($5.1 billion), loans extended by foreign governments ($1.74 billion) and Russian government foreign currency-denominated bonds ($30.36 billion), the ministry said.

As of early 2008, Russia's Soviet-era debt comprised loans from foreign governments ($3.76 billion), loans extended by foreign commercial banks and companies ($753.4 million) and OVGVZ government bonds ($2.72 billion), the ministry said.

Russia intends to repay its $7.2 billion Soviet-era debt by late 2012, the ministry said.

"The former U.S.S.R. debt will be repaid in the form of cash and commodities. The majority of these liabilities will be paid off by late 2012," the ministry said.

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