UAE benefits from Russian payback

Russia has paid off more than half a billion dollars of debt to the United Arab Emirates.

According to the Russian Finance Ministry press service, Russia's Vnesheconombank transferred over $US 562 million to the Emirates as part of a Soviet-era debt granted in 1991.

The USSR incurred the debt when it raised a financial loan from the UAE at the time.

The money was used to finance so-called “critical” imports and current payments to clear and service Soviet foreign debts.

From 1996 to 2006 Russia shipped certain products to the UAE in repayment for part of the loan.

It was only this year both governments signed an agreement on settling the outstanding balance.