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Serbian PM to travel to Russia to discuss South Stream & 1-bln-euro loan

October 29, 2012, 20:02 UTC+3

The Serbian premier said that Serbian President had discussed the possibility of granting a one-billion-euro Russian loan to Serbia with Putin

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BELGRADE, October 29 (Itar-Tass) —Serbia hopes to get a one-billion-euro credit from Russia to support the country’s state budget next year.

However, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said last Friday that it was too early to talk about granting the credit to Serbia. “We are planning to meet Serbian finance minister in the near future,” he said.

For his part, Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dacic said he would travel to Russia early in December to discuss the South Stream construction with Russian leadership.

“I am going to talk to Putin and Medvedev about whether there are problems with granting a Russian credit to Serbia,” Dacic told journalists in the city of Sremska Kamenica.

The Serbian premier said that Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic had discussed the possibility of granting a one-billion-euro Russian loan to Serbia with Vladimir Putin during his visit to Russia in September this year. Serbian Finance Minister Mladjan Dinkic later sent a credit request to his Russian counterpart Anton Siluanov, while Premier Ivica Dacic wrote a letter to Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

In the meantime, Serbia’s Construction and Urban Planning Minister Velimir Ilic said, opening the BELRE International Real Estate and Investment Fair on Monday, that Serbia and Russia were currently involved in credit talks and he hoped that his country would get the loan in 2013. He emphasized that an 800-million-dollar Russian credit which was earlier granted to Serbia would be spent for the initial purpose of modernizing and developing Serbian railways.

“We expect negotiations on railroad credit to end in the next few days,” Ilic went on to say. He added that the first stage would include the construction of the second stage of the Belgrade-Pancevo rail route. The Russian funds will also be used to build the Valevo-Loznica railway, revamp the Belgrade-Bar section and purchase new Russian-made trains.

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