Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Gazprom delays prepayment gas supply regime for Ukraine until June 16

This said Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller following his talks with European Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger...

Russian energy giant Gazprom decided to postpone until June 16 an introduction of the prepayment regime for the natural gas supplies to Ukraine, Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said on Wednesday.

“Bilateral consultations between the European Commission and the Russian delegation were held today in Brussels,” Miller said following his talks with European Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger.

“The Russian side made an advance to maintain constructive negotiations,” he said. “The prepayment regime will not be activated at 10:00 a.m. Moscow time on Wednesday and its introduction has been moved for the next Monday at 10:00 a.m.”

Besides Miller, the bilateral consultations with Oettinger in Brussles also involved Russian Eenergy Minister Alexander Novak. The talks lasted for nearly two and a half hours.

The issue of Ukraine’s natural gas debt to Russia was also in the focus of President Vladimir Putin’s telephone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel late on Tuesday night.
“Putin stressed that despite the emerged difficulties the Russian delegation obliges to continue the talks basing on the constructive stance and with the aim of achieving a mutually beneficial agreement,” the Kremlin said commenting on the results of the telephone conversation.

Russia, Ukraine and the European Union met on late Monday in Brussels for the fifth round of the three-party gas talks, which lasted for almost eight hours and ended on early Tuesday with the participating sides failing to reach a final agreement. The participants decided to continue the negotiations on late Tuesday.
However, Oettinger’s spokeswoman Sabine Berger later said that the talks were rescheduled for Wednesday morning at 9:30 local time (7:30 GMT) as the Russian delegates had to fly to Moscow to coordinate their positions with President Putin and returned to Brussels late on Tuesday night.
Following the trilateral talks on Tuesday, Novak said that the Russian gas price for Ukraine for June, July and August was for the first time discussed at the negotiations.

Kiev has already repaid part of its gas debt to Moscow following previous rounds of gas talks. Novak confirmed Moscow’s position that Ukraine should repay the gas debt for November-December 2013 to the tune of $1.451 billion (as of June 2) and $500 million for April-May 2014 by June 10............

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