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Russian gas market may be liberalized in 2-3 years — antimonopoly watchdog

May 25, 11:31 UTC+3 MOSCOW
According to the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service chief, about 40% of the domestic market is occupied by the companies not affiliated with Russia's gas giant Gazprom
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© ITAR-TASS/Alexey Filippov

MOSCOW, May 25. /TASS/. Domestic Russian gas market may be liberalized in the next 2-3 years, Head of the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) Igor Artemyev said in an interview with TASS.

"Liberalization of the domestic gas market may happen in the next 2-3 years. The fact is that there is a price parity due to lower world oil and gas prices. Today, the domestic price of gas is not very different from export price. This allows us to actively develop the market," he said.

According to Artemyev, currently about 40% of the domestic market is occupied by the companies not affiliated with Gazprom - this creates prerequisites for liberalization.

"This means that we can create a competitive system. Let’s call this market oligopolistic. Of course, it is not competitive. However, if handled properly, we can achieve not only reduction or stabilization of prices, but also encourage companies to build gas pipelines in Russian regions, remote corners of our country, gasify villages," the official said.

According to him, Gazprom is ready for liberalization and is in constant dialogue with the Antimonopoly Service.

"Together we write the so-called Grid Code, which aims to liberalize the domestic gas market. I am very pleased with our cooperation with Gazprom on this issue. I am saying it for the first time in my life," Artemyev said.

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