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Belarusian Reserves Shrink to $8.16 Billion on Chinese Swap Deal

Sept. 7 (Bloomberg) -- Belarus’s international reserves dropped for a second month in August as the former Soviet nation serviced external and domestic debt and a currency swap with China expired, the country’s central bank said.

The gold and foreign-currency holdings shrank 1 percent to $8.16 billion as of Sept. 1, after a 1.2 percent decline in July, the central bank in the capital, Minsk, said in an e-mailed statement today.

China and Belarus agreed on the three-year currency swap valued at about $3 billion in March 2009 to boost trade and investment, less than three months after the east European country received an emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund.

Belarus wants to maintain its reserves at between $6.1 billion and $7 billion until the beginning of 2013, according to monetary-policy guidelines approved by the government.

To contact the reporter on this story: Aliaksandr Kudrytski in Minsk, Belarus at akudrytski@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net

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