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    Presidential aide Prikhodko says Energy Charter outdated

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    MOSCOW, July 4 (RIA Novosti) - A Russian presidential aide said Tuesday that the Energy Charter was an outdated document.

    The Energy Charter Treaty, signed in The Hague in December 1991, spells out the terms of energy cooperation between eastern and western Europe. But Russia has refused to ratify it as Europe has demanded access for Central Asian states and other countries to Russian pipelines, which Moscow says will make their natural gas 50% cheaper than Russia's when it arrives in Europe.

    "It is a useful but an outdated document," Sergei Prikhodko said. "And, I hope this is not only our [Russia's] opinion."

    He said that the leaders of the Group of Eight industrialized nations would not discuss the charter separately at a summit in St. Petersburg on July 15-17.

    He added that not only Russia but also other G8 countries had a "specific opinion of the Energy Charter, particularly regarding the role and future of nuclear energy."

    "The G8 chose a format [for the summit] that would not discuss documents, but would develop a collective view of what each country, whether it is an energy producer or consumer, could do in the future," Prikhodko said.

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