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Russian minister invites EU commissioner to discuss Ukrainian gas issue April 28

April 23, 2014, 18:03 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The minister is prepared to discuss other proposals concerning the venue and time of the meeting
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Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak

© ITAR-TASS/Dmitry Astakhov

MOSCOW, April 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak has invited EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger to meet in Moscow on April 28 and discuss the Ukrainian gas issue.

The minister is prepared to discuss other proposals concerning the venue and time of the meeting, his spokesperson Olga Golant told ITAR-TASS on Wednesday, April 23.

Oettinger has reaffirmed the European Commission’s readiness to conduct multilateral gas talks at the political level.

At present, the gas talks are expected to be held between different expert groups: between Slovak and Ukrainian gas operators and within the Slovakia-Ukraine-EU format, the spokesperson said.

The European Commissioner invited Novak and his Ukrainian counterpart Yuri Prodan to tripartite consultations, Oettinger’s spokesperson said, adding that their date and place had not been specified yet.

Prodan said the gas talks within the Russia-Ukraine-Slovakia-EC format might be held in Bratislava on April 24. The initiative was put forth by Russia, he said.

Earlier, the press service confirmed the conceptual readiness of the European Commission to hold multilateral talks over the gas issue at the political level.

As ITAR-TASS reported earlier, the parliament-appointed Minister of Energy and Coalmining Yuriy Prodan stated on Wednesday that April 24, talks on the gas issue with participation of Russia, Ukraine, Slovakia and the European Commission might take place in Bratislava. He said that the relevant initiative was earlier proposed by the Russian side.

“There is a proposal from the Russian side and from the European Commission to hold a four-party or three-party meeting. Today, the issue of the three ministers’ meeting in Bratislava is considered, — of the Slovakian, Russian ministers and me, as well as the European commissioner,” Yuriy Prodan informed.

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