MOSCOW, April 5. /TASS/. Russia’s oil supplies to Belarus may be resumed on April 13 once the payment for delivered gas arrives, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said Wednesday.
"If the payment for gas (supplied) previously arrives they (oil supplies) may be resumed (starting April 13 - TASS), but only in this case," he said when asked whether oil supplies to Belarus will be resumed on April 13.
On April 3, it was announced following a meeting of Russian and Belarusian presidents that the dispute in the oil and gas sector had been settled. The sides made a decision to review intergovernmental papers related to the gas and oil cooperation. After they are initialed the Belarusian side will pay $726 mln worth of debt to Gazprom. Russia will increase tax-free oil supplies from 18 mln to 24 mln tonnes per year and provide discounts to Belarus with a step-down coefficient to the price calculation formula for the period from 2018 to 2019. Also, the two countries are expected to develop a single gas market regulation by January 1, 2018.
Belarus and Russia have been negotiating a reduction in gas prices since early 2016. Minsk insisted on lowering the price of Russian natural gas from $132 to $73 per 1,000 cubic meters and demanded that Russia switch to equal netback pricing. In response to underpayment of around $300 mln for Russian gas supplies Moscow cut its tax-free oil supplies to Belarus by more than a third.