10 ME, 10 YOU (10 io, 10 te)

Russian and Italy will each give a 10% stake in the South Stream pipeline to France's EDF , Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said today.

"We will do it concurrently - us and the Italians, 10% each," Putin told reporters on a visit to Ukraine which followed a meeting with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi in Italy.

EDF is set to get a 20% stake in the South Stream gas pipeline designed to bring Russian gas to Europe, with work on the project due to start in the first half of 2012, Putin and Berlusconi said today.

Separately, Putin said Russia's budget will lose $3 billion this year and $4 billion in 2011 as a result of agreeing last week to a 30% cut in the price of its gas supplies to Ukraine.

"In essence it will mean an increase in the budget deficit for us," he said. "These are serious parameters, but we will manage."

Russia had expected a deficit of 3 trillion roubles ($103 billion), or 6.8% of gross domestic product this year, Reuters reported today.

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