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    MOSCOW, February 2nd, 2004 (RIA Novosti correspondent) - Last Friday, the Russian Finance Ministry channelled 106.3 billion roubles to the Stabilisation Fund set up this year for the first time.

    Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said this Monday at the cabinet conference chaired by Vladimir Putin.

    "I know that on Friday the Stabilisation Fund received a considerable sum," the president said and asked Alexei Kudrin to elaborate on the issue.

    "The Stabilisation Fund was set up for the first time and began really operating," said Kudrin.

    He remarked that the Fund's accounts were separated from the budget and placed in the Russian Central Bank.

    According to him, the Fund confirms that the pursued economic policy is appropriate, and will work as a macroeconomic stabiliser.

    "The Stabilisation Fund reduces our dependence on oil prices," said the deputy prime minister.

    Kudrin also expressed confidence that this fact would be seen by the market and investors as positive.

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