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NOVO-OGARYOVO, September 30. /TASS/. Russian gas giant Gazprom has not received $500 mln prepayment for gas supplies from Kiev yet, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Wednesday.
"The funds have not been received. 500 mln /dollars/ are expected /to be received/," the Minister said when answering the question whether Gazprom received funds from Naftogaz Ukrainy as prepayment for gas supplies.
As TASS reported earlier on September 25, trilateral gas talks between Russia, the European Union and Ukraine in Brussels resulted in an agreement on Ukraine’s purchases of gas from Gazprom in the volume of 2 bln cubic meters. Ukraine’s Naftogaz has already accumulated around $500 mln for purchases. The funds are expected to be transferred to Gazprom’s account after all documents initiated in Brussels are signed.
The energy minister said Russia and the European Commission (EC) have signed the protocol on gas supplies to Ukraine. Novak added that it’s now Kiev’s turn.
"The ball is in Ukraine’s court. The protocol has been signed from our side and from the side of the EC too. In fact nothing hinders them /Kiev/ from paying according to the agreements we reached," the Minister said.
He added that the protocol on gas supplies to Ukraine is already in force and can be performed.
"Existence of the protocol is not a condition of our relationship. There are agreements already, which can regulate our work now if you like. We didn’t have any protocols in the second quarter of this year while discount was granted," he said.
Naftogaz purchased gas from Gazprom in accordance with additional agreements, which were signed to the contract and in accordance with the agreements reached at the consultations level. "Protocol is setting of our agreements, which will not change. We think that protocol has been signed and our colleagues may well perform it," Novak said.
Kiev is waiting for the decision of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to extend $300 mln more to Ukraine for purchases of Russian gas. The total package for Russian gas procurement will amount to $1.3 bln, Ukraine’s prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said on Wednesday at the cabinet meeting.
"The meeting of EBRD Board of Directors is currently held and consideration of the Ukraine’s issue started. We expect they will decide to additionally provide $300 mln to us for the gas purchase on the eastern border [border with Russia]," Yatsenyuk said.
"Such a positive decision will also make possible to unlock the receipt of $500 mln more from the World Bank by the year-end," Yatsenyuk said. "The total possible package equals $1.3 bln, including the 500 [mln] already at accounts, $300 mln expected from the EBRD, and $500 mln from the World Bank against government guarantees," he added.
Russia, Ukraine and the European Union earlier signed a trilateral agreement on conditions of Russian gas supplies to Ukraine in forthcoming winter period. Russian representatives expressed concerns that Kiev may not have enough funds to pay for required fuel volumes, estimated at 5-7 bln cubic meters by Gazprom and 9-12 bln cubic meters by the European Commission.