We have determined the complete nucleotide sequence of the Bacillus subtilis homologues of the Escherichia coli phosphate-specific transport (pst) genes in the framework of the international B. subtilis genome sequencing project. The pst genes in E. coli form an operon arranged in the order pstS, pstC, pstA, pstB and phoU. In the case of B. subtilis, there are also five ORFs presumably forming an operon. The deduced amino acid sequences of the products of these ORFs show striking similarities to their E. coli counterparts. Comparison of the organization of the pst operon of B. subtilis with that of E. coli revealed that the gene corresponding to phoU is missing, while there are two genes homologous to pstB in B. subtilis. The pst operon is located at 222 degrees on the B. subtilis chromosome.