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Kiev Hopes to Sign Additional Agreement to Gas Contract with Russia

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Ukraine expects to sign with the Russian side an additional agreement to the gas contract drafted by Naftogaz, acting Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said Tuesday.

KIEV, June 3 (RIA Novosti) - Ukraine expects to sign with the Russian side an additional agreement to the gas contract drafted by Naftogaz, acting Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said Tuesday.

“We believe that the results of this path [of negotiations between Gazprom and Naftogaz] must lead to the signing of an additional agreement, the draft of which Naftogaz had handed over to Gazprom Sunday evening,” Yatsenyuk said.

Earlier in the day the Ukraine’s interim prime minister said that Russian energy giant Gazprom and Ukraine’s state energy company Naftogaz have been negotiating gas issues in the German capital Berlin. Yatsenyuk confirmed that Kiev continues to insists on $268 as the price for one thousand cubic meters.

Ukrainian Justice Minister Pavel Petrenko told RIA Novosti earlier that Kiev demands Moscow not only decrease the gas price but exclude the take-or-pay provision from its gas contract.

On Monday Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said he hadn’t received any proposals from Ukrainian state oil and gas company Naftogaz to review the current gas contract.

The gas price for Ukraine surged from $268.5 to $485.50 per 1,000 cubic meters in April after Russia annulled two discounts granted previously to the country. Kiev keeps rejecting the new price saying it was ready to clear its debt if Moscow agreed to sell gas at the old price.

Russia said it would only consider lowering the price of gas to Kiev if it begins paying off its gas debts. Naftogaz has to transfer $2.237 billion by June 9, which will cover unpaid gas bills from November to April.

Kiev has paid Gazprom only $786.4 billion so far. Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan said that this sum is the only undisputed part of the Kiev’s gas debt. It’s a payment for gas supplied to Ukraine at the price of $268.5 per thousand cubic meters from January to March, he explained.

According to EU Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger, Ukraine’s gas debt to Russia had reached $4 billion upgrading the previous figure of $3.5.

The Gazpom CEO announced that Ukraine would owe Russia about $5.2 billion for natural gas as of June 7 if it makes no payments by that date.

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