The amount of debts in taxes and levies to the consolidated budget of theRussian Federation was 556.7bn rubles ($17.65bn) as of August 1, 2002,which was 46 percent of the total amount of debts in taxes, late paymentinterests and sanctions, the press service of the Tax Ministry reported.Debts grew by 41.4bn rubles ($1.31bn) or 8 percent, compared to thebeginning of 2002. In July the amount of debts surged by 26.3bn rubles($834m) or almost 5 percent. Arrears in tax collection amounted to 249.8bnrubles ($7.93bn) on August 1, 2002, which was 15.6bn rubles ($495m) or 5.9percent lower than at the beginning of this year. At the same time arrearsin tax collection in July added 4.5bn rubles ($142.6m) or 1.8 percent.Deferred payments decreased by 7.6bn rubles ($240.88m) or 5 percent,compared to the beginning of 2002 and by 3.6bn rubles ($114.1m) or 2.4percent in July and amounted to 144.1bn rubles ($4.57bn) on August 1,2002.Debts on federal taxes amounted to 486.4bn rubles ($15.42bn) as of August1, 2002, which was 87.4 percent of debts to the consolidated budget. It was39.5bn rubles ($1.25bn) or 8.8 percent more than at the beginning of 2002.Arrears in the collection of federal taxes amounted to 213.4bn rubles($6.76bn) on August 1, 2002, which was 11.8bn rubles ($374m) or 5.2 percentlower than at the beginning of 2002. .