Russia's government may raise a five percent import tariff on silicon metaland reduce or scrap a 6.5 percent export tariff on some other minor metals,a government official said on Wednesday.The Commission for Protective Measures in Foreign Trade, a government panelresponsible for drafting customs tariffs resolutions, plans to discuss thechanges in early September, the commission's secretary Andrei Kushnirenkoreported. He said the commission's working group had agreed earlier thisweek that large quantities of cheap imported silicon, used mainly inalloys, were damaging local producers.Russia's largest producer of silicon metal is the country's second largestaluminum company - SUAL-Holding. Its silicon metal output in 2001 was over50,000 tons. Kushnirenko said the commission also planned to examinereducing or scrapping export tariff on some minor metals, of which Russiawas not an important exporter, but he declined to name these metals, theRussia Journal reported..
Russia's Ambassador to Belarus, Mikhail Babich, said that Moscow would treat any military intervention in the affairs of Belarus as an attack on Russia