WASHINGTON -- David Mulford, the Treasury's under secretary of international affairs, said small interest arrears are building on the former Soviet Union's external debts and need to be addressed.

Speaking to reporters at the annual meeting of the Bretton Woods committee, Mr. Mulford said continuing problems with interest payments could jeopardize the former Soviet republics' negotiations with official creditors.

The Paris Club of Creditor Government has agreed to a series of three-month debt-principal moratoriums.

Paris Club Due to Meet

The club is meeting this month to review the debt moratoriums and Mr. Mulford noted that further talks with Russian officials are expected in late September to continue the process of reviewing the Soviet debt issue.

Separately, World Bank president Lewis Preston said his agency could move to provide broader assistance to the republics of the former Soviet Union in selected cases even if there are no prior agreements in place with the International Monetary Fund.

Mr. Preston said the 15 republics are "undergoing tremendous terms of trade shocks" and that financial support for reform programs is badly needed.

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