Updated 00:26 a.m. Moscow time.
BRUSSELS, October 21 (RIA Novosti) - Ukraine is ready to submit a draft of a legally binding document which would determine the temporary "winter plan" for gas and it insists that Gazprom should sign the document with a fixed price of $385 per thousand cubic meters of gas, Ukraine's Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan stated.
"The European Commission and the Ukrainian side believe that the interim solution should be a legally binding document. Unfortunately today, in course of our consultations, we got a protocol of a document, which the Russian side had signed, and Mr. Novak said that this document is not legally binding," Prodan said, speaking at a press conference on Monday.
Russia-Ukraine-EU talks on Ukraine’s gas crisis were held on October, 21 in Brussels. Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan, his Russian counterpart Alexander Novak and the EU Energy Commissioner Gunther Oettinger participated in the talks. The talks mainly touched the issues of temporary gas deliveries to Ukraine from Russia and the repayment of the Ukrainian gas debt.
"We will submit our proposals to the European Commission: what should this legally binding document look like. We insist on this document, we insist on the fact that this document should be signed by Naftogaz and Gazprom," Prodan added.
The Russian side expressed its concern that the signing of such a document between Gazprom and Naftogaz could affect the decision of the Stockholm arbitration court, which would investigate the dispute on gas prices and the cost of its transit not in Gazprom's favor.
"We are ready to offer the Russian side to turn together to the arbitration court and the panel of judges has already been formed, in order to get the document as soon as possible that would state that such an interim solution would not affect the decision of the Stockholm court," Prodan noted.
Ukraine is facing the approaching winter with low natural gas reserves. In June, Russian energy giant Gazprom switched Ukraine to a prepayment system for gas deliveries in light of its gas debt of more than $5 billion.
Following a summit in Milan on October 17, both Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko stated that progress has been made on the gas deliveries issue. Moscow and Kiev have resolved in principle all the key controversial issues concerning Russian gas supplies to Ukraine during the upcoming winter season.
After the Tuesday talks Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak confirmed that Ukraine had agreed to pay $385 per 1,000 cubic meters of Russian gas during the winter months. According to him, the only unresolved issue left is Ukraine's ability to find financing for the debt payoff and to ensure future payments on time.