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Russian budget revenues from oil taxes drop to lowest since March 2021 in December

FILE PHOTO: Employees of an oil platform in the Baltic Sea take part in the early voting for the parliamentary election

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian state budget revenue from oil taxes declined in December to 511.7 billion roubles ($7.6 billion), the lowest since March 2021, according to data from the Finance Ministry, following a slide in oil prices.

However, total oil and gas revenues, which account for almost a half of total state budget proceeds, rose by 6% last month in annualised terms to 931.5 billion roubles thanks to a hike in taxes on gas giant Gazprom, after a drop of 2.1% in November.

Russian oil production and exports have held up in early January despite sanctions from the West and price caps introduced last month over the conflict in Ukraine.

Russian oil producers have had no difficulties in securing export deals despite those moves, Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Wednesday.

Oil tax revenues were down by a third from December 2021 as the price of Russia's flagship Urals oil blend fell to an average of $50.47 per barrel last month from $72.71 a year earlier, according to the Finance Ministry.

The ministry said proceeds from the oil mineral extraction tax (MET) - the single largest tax item for oil producers - fell in December by 29.5% year-on-year to 474.8 billion roubles ($7 billion).

Proceeds from oil export duty plummeted last month by 59.5% year-on-year to 36.9 billion roubles, as the government is phasing out export taxes in favour of the mineral extraction tax.

($1 = 67.7700 roubles)

(Reporting by Darya Korsunskaya; writing by Vladimir Soldatkin; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)