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    FORMATION OF CIS COMMON ENERGY ENVIRONMENT IS "NATURAL AND POSITIVE PROCESS" - EXPERT

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    MOSCOW, February 18, 2004. (RIA Novosti) -- Formation of the common energy environment of the Commonwealth of Independent States is "a natural and positive process," said Yevgeni Mishuk, chairman of the executive committee of the CIS Electricity Council. On Wednesday he participated in the RIA Novosti round table Formation of the CIS Common Energy Environment: A New Integration Stage of the CIS Countries.

    "In general, it is a positive phenomenon. But we are only in the beginning of the road and much effort will be required to dovetail the legislative bases of the countries of the CIS", Mishuk said.

    To him, formation of the energy environment is handled most successfully within the framework of The Four /Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine/.

    "Especially reliable are the 'electricity connections' between Russia and Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus, Russia and Ukraine," the expert said.

    He noted that contacts between Ukraine and Belarus have been wrecked since the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear power station accident.

    "Experts are for the rehabilitation of power transmission lines between Ukraine and Belarus. In obtaining information, Belarus and Ukraine are studying the matter of building 330- and 700-kilowatt/hour power transmission lines," Mishuk said.

    "With the formation of the common energy environment an electricity pool will emerge. Its participants will buy electricity at lucrative prices," he said.

    In Mishuk's opinion, it will be conducive to the creation of "natural conditions for competition between the internal economic entities. This will certainly produce a positive effect on the pricing policy and, eventually, lead to the lowering of prices on the energy market of The Four and, later on, the countries of the CIS."

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