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    Tatneft oil firm posts 21.7% net profit drop in 2008

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    MOSCOW, April 27 (RIA Novosti) - Tatneft, one of Russia's top ten crude producers, said on Monday its net profit under Russian Accounting Standards declined 21.7%, year-on-year, in 2008 to 34.29 billion rubles ($1.03 billion).

    Tatneft, which accounts for 80% of oil output in Russia's Volga Republic of Tatarstan, said its losses in the fourth quarter amounted to 4.4 billion rubles ($132 million) while net profit in the first three quarters stood at 38.7 billion rubles ($1.2 billion).

    Tatneft attributed its net profit decrease in the fourth quarter to a slump in world oil prices.

    Tatneft earlier announced its crude output in 2009 could shrink by 1.5% to 25.4 million metric tons (186 million barrels). In 2008, the Volga-based company increased oil output 0.1% to 25.77 million metric tons (189 million barrels).

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