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EC Vice President Guenther Oettinger on Thursday proposed holding the next tripartite meeting on October 21 in Berlin. Ukraine was the first to agree to the date.
“When I am asked about the date, I am ready to (meet) even now, because this is a very important issue. So October 21 is okay for us,” Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Yury Prodan said Thursday.
Upon the results of the previous round that was held September 26, the trilateral talks were to be continued at the end of this week.
The previous rounded was crowned with a new package agreement on settling the gas problem. Russian and Ukrainian governments are expected to give their consent to it now.
The essence of the package agreement was made public by the European Energy Commissioner, Guenther Oettinger. He said Ukraine was supposed to pay $ 3.1 billon before the yearend to Russia’s natural gas producer and exporter, OAO Gazprom, for the gas it had supplied to Ukraine previously.
Gazprom will supply 5 billion cubic meters of gas to Ukraine and will offer it an option for another 5 billion.
The price for these supplies will be $385 for 1,000 cubic meters with account of a $100 discount extended for a period of six months.
After Ukraine pays its $2 billion debt to Gazprom, the latter will supply another 5 billion or more cubic meters of gas and these supplies will be mandatory for both sides.
Gazprom’s CEO Alexei Miller said earlier he had doubts about Ukraine’s ability to repay its debt for natural gas to Russia.
Russia stopped gas flows to Ukraine in June over an unsettled dispute over debt and gas prices.
As of August 1, the overall debt of Naftogaz to Gazprom for supplied gas totaled about $5.3 billion.
Russia raised the gas price for Ukraine from $268.5 to $485.5 per 1,000 cu m from April 2014. Ukraine refused to pay for Russian natural gas supplies at such a high price.
After Russia and Ukraine failed to reach a compromise on the gas issue, Naftogaz and Gazprom filed mutual claims to the Stockholm Arbitration Tribunal.