MOSCOW, July 6 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's natural gas exports to countries other than former Soviet republics declined 50%, year-on-year, in January-May 2009 to 37.8 billion cubic meters, the Federal Customs Service said on Monday.
Exports to the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a loose association of former Soviet republics excluding the Baltic States, fell 41.2% to 5.3 billion cubic meters, the Federal Customs Service said.
Overall, Russia exported 43.1 billion cubic meters worth $12.9 billion in the first five months of the year, the Federal Customs Service said.
The national statistics service Rosstat earlier reported that Russia's natural gas output declined 19.2%, year-on-year, in the first five months of 2009 to 238 billion cubic meters.
Natural gas production had been expected to reach 620-644 billion cubic meters in 2009, with exports estimated at 190-196 billion cubic meters. In 2008, output grew 1.6%, year-on-year, to 663 billion cubic meters, with exports of 174.3 billion cubic meters bringing in $66.4 billion.