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    TRANS NAFTA NOT TO SELL GAS TO BELARUS AT PREVIOUS PRICE

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    MOSCOW, March 2, 2004. (RIA Novosti correspondent) - Belarussian national gas distributor Beltransgaz has asked Russian JSC Trans Nafta to continue supplying natural gas to the country at the previous price of $46.68 per 1,000 cubic meters, the Russian company's representative told RIA Novosti on Tuesday.

    "The Belarussian party wants us to supply gas at the previous price, but it is impossible and we warned about it when signing an addendum to the contract on gas supplies to the republic on March 1st and 2nd," he pointed out.

    "We purchase gas at higher prices and it is unprofitable for us to sell it to Belarus at the previous price for then we incur losses," the source said.

    Tuesday is the last day for Trans Nafta's gas deliveries to Belarus. If Minsk does not sign a contract with one of the independent producers or with Gazprom, the country may again be left without natural gas.

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