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Alternatives to Russian oil found by Belarus will be beneficial for both, says ambassador

January 17, 18:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW

According to Mikhail Babich, if Belarus finds alternative oil supplies Russia will be able to receive additional budget revenues by selling the existing volumes of oil to third countries

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MOSCOW, January 17. /TASS/. The Russian side believes that if Belarus finds alternative options of oil supplies through the Baltic ports that will be in the interests of both Minsk and Moscow, Russia’s Special Presidential Envoy for Trade and Economic Cooperation with Belarus, Ambassador to Minsk Mikhail Babich said in an interview aired by the Rossiya-24 TV news channel on Thursday.

"If our partners find oil cheaper than Russia’s they will earn more, which we cannot but be excited about. Then they will earn more and be able to solve their social and economic tasks, which will be in the interests of both the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation," he explained.

According to Babich, if Belarus finds alternative oil supplies Russia will be able to receive additional budget revenues by selling the existing volumes of oil to third countries. The diplomat added that as a result of upgrading of two Belarusian refineries crude refining will total around 24 mln tonnes in 2020. "If that is Russian oil, the shortfall in Russia’s budget revenues will rise even more, which is why the volume of alternative oil found by our partners and supplied to their refineries will be equal to the volume of oil (Russia) will be able to sell to third countries receiving extra budget revenues," he said.

In 2018, Russia’s shortfall in revenues amounted to $2.3 bln with the total volume of supplied oil with zeroed duty standing at 18 mln tonnes and the average duty on it amounting to $128, Babich noted.

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