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TRIPOLI, April 17 (RIA Novosti) - Moscow wrote off on Thursday Libya's $4.5 billion debt in exchange for multi-billion dollar contracts for Russian companies. Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, who accompanied Putin on his visit to the North African state, told reporters that the size of Libya's debt to Russia had been brought down by $100 million from $4.6 billion to take into account Russian state bank VTB's debt to Libyan companies.
The deals signed include a $3.5-billion contract for rail monopoly Russian Railways to build a 500-km (310-mile) section from the city of Sirte to Benghazi, Putin said.
Kudrin said 70% of the equipment and steel products required for the project would, under the contract, be supplied by Russian companies.
TRIPOLI, April 16 (RIA Novosti) - Russia and Libya have agreed that Tripoli will repay Moscow $4.6 billion in outstanding Soviet-era debt, Russian Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said on Wednesday.
"The amount of the debt has been fixed at $4.6 billion," Kudrin said told journalists in Tripoli.
Moscow had earlier put the debt at about $3.5 billion. Tripoli said in the 1990s that Russia also had an outstanding debt to Libya.