MINSK, Belarus, Sept. 7 Belarus says it is in talks with Turkmenistan on natural gas supplies, an apparent bid to reduce supplies from Russia.
"Talks are being held with Turkmenistan to make sure there is Turkmen gas in the Belarusian balance through barter schemes in the midterm," Uladzimir Tsimashpolski, a deputy presidium chairman of the Belarusian National Academy of Sciences, said Thursday.
The comments were reported by ITAR-TASS.
The move is a bid by Belarus to diversify its energy resources. Ties with Russia, once close, have become frosty over Gazprom's decision to raise rates to international levels and cut off supplies when bills aren't paid.
Belarus is also in talks with Azerbaijan on the allocation of quotas for drilling Azeri oil, ITAR-TASS reported. Similar discussions are being held with Iran and Venezuela.