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Russian govt. backs plan to settle Soviet-era debt to Finland

MOSCOW, June 13 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's cabinet approved Tuesday a draft agreement on settling part of the Soviet Union's outstanding debt to Finland, the government's press service said.

Under an intergovernmental agreement, $30 million will be repaid in goods and services in the next three years to cover some of the Soviet debt restructured through the Paris Club, the statement said.

A price list of goods and services will be agreed in bilateral talks, the service said, adding that the Finance Ministry, which would oversee coordination work with Russian and Finnish agencies, was entitled to sign a final agreement on behalf of the Russian government.

Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said last month that Russia would settle all its debts with other countries by the end of this year.

He said Russia would also repay $12 billion of its $22-bln Soviet-era debt to the Paris Club in 2006.

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