P.M. BRIEFING : Finn-Soviet Bartering to Go

From Times Wire Services

The Soviet Union and Finland will scrap the unique barter arrangement that has existed between the Communist superpower and its capitalist neighbor since World War II, officials said today.

Under the clearinghouse system, the Soviet Union traded oil and other goods, mostly raw materials, for the equivalent in Finnish industrial and wood products.

But Moscow's plans to end its centrally planned economy will mean "fundamental changes" in the Soviet Union's foreign trade, said Soviet Deputy Prime Minister Stepan Sitaryan.

"The trade arrangement . . . has to develop and adapt to the prevailing circumstances," he told reporters after talks called by Finland's Prime Minister Harri Holkeri.

Holkeri could not say when the trade agreement will actually be changed, but the two will meet again in November.

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