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Russia energy minister says gas talks with Ukraine, EC constructive

Advance payment regime for Russian gas supplies to Ukraine in June is not ruled out as of yet

BERLIN, May 30. /ITAR-TASS/. Gas talks Russia held with Ukraine and the European Commission were "constructive", Russian Minister of Energy Alexander Novak said on Friday after the third round of gas consultations in Berlin.

Advance payment regime for Russian gas supplies to Ukraine in June is not ruled out as of yet, Novak added. Russia is worried over Ukraine’s financial situation, bearing in mind its debts for Russian gas, he stressed.

“We discussed the issue of financial aid to Ukraine from the European Union, international crediting organizations,” he said. “The Russian side expressed serious concern over the financial aspects of the Ukrainian crisis.”

“Payment arrears do not add trust to the relations between partners, steps are needed to re-build it,” Novak said, adding that Russia waited for Kiev to repay “at least those debts it does not challenge."


Ukraine not going to pay $500 per 1,000 cu m

Ukraine will never buy Russian gas at a price of $500 per 1,000 cubic meters, since such price is unacceptable, Ukraine’s parliament-appointed Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said on Friday.

On Monday, Yatsenyuk said that gas talks with Russia would end with either signing of a new gas agreement or with Kiev’s appeal to the international court of arbitration. Ukraine, in his words, had prepared a package of documents for that.


Ukraine says it repaid part of gas debt

Ukraine said it had transferred the payment for part of its gas debt to Russia, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.

“Liabilities are considered discharged not at the moment of money transfer but at the moment of its passing to the account of the creditor, that is to the Gazprom account," Medvedev said.

“When Gazprom receives the money, we will see it, and that will be a different story. But today we must make sure that Ukraine is willing to pay,” he stressed. “Any other presentation of the problem is impossible: when I hear them saying ‘give us other price and then we will pay,’ I think that’s preposterous, reliable partners do not behave that way, and even less reliable partners never do that.”

He said he hoped Ukraine would finally pay what it owed for the Russian gas.