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Ukraine and EU confirm size of Ukraine’s outstanding debt to Russia for April 1

May 19, 2014, 18:41 UTC+3 BERLIN
“We said we had not received a single payment in more than two months,” Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak says
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 Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak

© ITAR-TASS/Valery Sharifulin

BERLIN, May 19. /ITAR-TASS/. Both the European Commission and Ukraine have confirmed the size of Ukraine’s outstanding debt for Russian gas for April 1, 2014, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak told a news conference in Berlin after meeting EU Commissioner for Energy Gunther Oettinger on Monday.

“The Russian side continues meeting its gas commitments to Ukraine and European consumers,” he said, adding the debt remained unpaid on May 19.

“We said we had not received a single payment in more than two months. We heard both from Ukraine and the European Commission that they confirmed the existing debt both in terms of its volume and price,” Novak emphasized.

The economic situation is not the only reason why Ukraine has so far failed to pay off at least part of its gas debt to Russia, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said.

The minister reminded reporters that in the first three months of this year and at the end of 2013, Ukraine was paying the old price, “and these payments had been collected from consumers”.

“Accordingly, they were to have been paid (to Russia’s Gazprom),” he continued. 

“We expected that part of the funds allocated by the International Monetary Fund would be used to pay for the delivered gas,” he said, adding that at the present stage Ukraine should at least demonstrate readiness to pay off the debt.

At the same time, Ukraine’s repayment of current debts to Russia is not enough for the settlement of the ‘gas row,” he said. “It is not enough to pay off the debt to see the situation normalized; the financial situation and economic constituent must be considered on the whole, so that to have a possibility to make current payments in the future, to timely pump gas into underground gas storage facilities, or in other words to restore a normal situation in the Ukrainian economy,” the minister added.

He said Russia was ready “to participate in the restoration of the Ukrainian economy, make its contribution, however not alone but with taking into account contribution by other participants, including countries of the European Union”.

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