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KIEV, June 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukrainian state gas company Naftogaz and Russian monopoly gas exporter Gazprom have chances to reach an agreement on gas supplies without arbitration, Naftogaz chief executive Andriy Kobolev told journalists on Monday.
“Starting the arbitration process does not prohibit negotiations. Moreover, the practice shows that companies have such talks at the time of arbitration and often reach an agreement before the arbitration verdict,” he said.
Kobolev expressed hope this would happen in the gas dispute at the arbitration court in Stockholm, saying “the two things do not exclude each other”.
Ukraine was ready for talks and planned to propose a new, trilateral, stage of negotiations with participation of the European Commission, probably taking place in July, Kobolev said.
The Nazftogaz chief believes reference to arbitration in Stockholm can take about a month, depending on Gazprom’s progress in choosing its arbitrators and other formalities.