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Russia will send Belarus first $1 bln of loan by year-end

MOSCOW, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Russia will send Belarus the first $1 billion tranche of a $1.5 billion loan by the end of the year and provide the remainder of the loan in 2021, Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Wednesday.

Siluanov told reporters the loan, agreed by President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko during talks this week, would help Belarus and its state companies honour their debt obligations and support financial stability in the ex-Soviet country.

Siluanov added that the two countries had yet to agree on the final terms of the loan, to be denominated both in Russian roubles and U.S. dollars. (Reporting by Darya Korsunskaya and Andrey Ostroukh; Writing by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; Editing by Catherine Evans)