Gas export negotiations are at a standstill. Talks to establish a joint venture are making no progress, either. That was the reason behind Gasprom suspension of gas supplies to Belarus, January 1, and whatever gas Belarus presently has is coming from independent sellers, says the release.
Intergovernmental agreements signed April 12, 2002, envisage equal terms for the two countries' pricing policies, and closer partnership in gas industry. The Gasprom was exporting natural gas to Belarus for Russian domestic prices since May 1, 2002, in compliance with one of the agreements. As the other agreement had it, Belarus was to provide conditions for a gas-piping joint venture on the basis of its Beltransgas, and in cooperation with the Gasprom. The Russian-based company was sticking to the arrangement, and precisely fulfilled its obligations by exporting to Belarus 10.2 billion cubic metres of gas.
Independent exporters, who took over from the Gasprom, January 1, intend to provide an approximate two billion cu m within the month.