MOSCOW, May 30 (RIA Novosti) – As of Thursday evening, Moscow has not received any gas debt payments from Kiev, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Friday.
He reiterated that Russia was not ready to discuss any gas discounts until Kiev repays at least a part of its debt, which may hit $5.2 billion in May.
“Naturally, our position remains unchanged,” Alexander Novak said.
Ukraine’s gas debt to Russia currently stands at $4 billion, according to EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger. Kiev continues to reject the new price of $485 per thousand cubic meters of Russian gas.
Russia’s energy giant Gazprom earlier announced a switch to a prepayment scheme, in full accordance with the 2009 energy contract between Russia and Ukraine.
Following the decision, an advance bill was sent to Ukrainian state energy company Naftogaz for June deliveries, with supplies to be suspended starting June 3 if the debt is not repaid.
Earlier this week, Ukraine said its oil and gas company, Naftogaz, had hired a Swedish law firm to represent it in court as it prepares litigation against Gazprom over its pricing policy.