KIEV, December 7 (Sputnik) — Ukraine will begin an extraction of 1 billion cubic meters of Russian gas, which it has already paid for, on Monday, Ukrainian Energy Minister Volodymyr Demchishin said Sunday.
“On Friday the amount for 1 billion cubic meters was paid, starting from Monday we will begin extraction,” he said on air of Ukraine’s 1+1 TV channel.
On Friday, Ukraine’s energy company Naftogaz released a statement saying that it had transferred $378 million to Russia's Gazprom in prepayment for gas deliveries.
In June, Moscow switched Kiev to a prepayment system of gas deliveries in light of Kiev's gas debt of more than $5 billion at the time. Since then, Ukraine has been receiving gas through reverse flows from several European countries and using its own reserves.
In October, Ukraine and Russia reached an agreement for the Russian gas to be supplied to Ukraine until March 2015. Kiev should also pay Moscow $3.1 billion by the end of 2014 in order to cover part of its outstanding debt. In November, Naftogaz transferred the first $1.45 billion payment as part of its debt to Gazprom.