Minsk wants Russian oil reexport duties to be scrapped from 2011

RIA Novosti citing Mr Andrei Yevdochenko Belarusian Foreign Deputy Minister as saying that Belarus is insisting that duties for the re-export of Russian oil should be cancelled from January 1st 2011.

He said that "There are duties inside the Customs Union that contradicts the norms and principles of international trade. He added that "We do not expect privileges from anybody and expect that all business entities will start to work under equal conditions within the next five years."

Duties for the re-export of Russian oil were introduced as Belarusian refineries bought oil from Russia at domestic market prices and sold refined petroleum products in Europe. The export tax on these petroleum products went to the Belarusian budget.

Russia is currently imposing tax on all petroleum products supplied to Belarus.

Russia exported more than 21 million tons of oil to Belarus last year, but only 5 million tonnes to 6 million tons was for domestic consumption. The rest was re-exported, some after passing through one of the country's two oil refineries.


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