Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak (L), Ukraine’s Energy and Coal Industry Minister Yuri Prodan (R), European Commission President Jose Manuel Barosso (C) address a press conference as EU Energy Commissioner Gunther Oettinger (2nd L) and European Commission vice-president Miros Sefkovic look on, after an agreement was signed between Ukraine, Russia and the EU at the European Union Commission headquarters in Brussels on October 30, 2014 (AFP Photo / Emmanuel Dunand)
Russia, Ukraine, and the European Commission have signed an agreement on gas supply and transit conditions until March 2015 during talks in Brussels.
The agreement was signed by Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak, Ukrainian Energy Minister Yury Prodan, and vice president of the EC in charge of energy, Guenther Oettinger. The signing was witnessed by European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and the EC’s new vice president in charge of energy, Marosh Shefchovich.
Ukraine will be able to receive the needed volumes of Russian gas until the end of March based on a pre-payment plan at a price of $378 per 1,000 cubic meters, Oettinger said during the press conference.
Speaking at a briefing after the signing of the deal, Oettinger assured that Ukraine said it is ready to pay $1.451 billion of its gas debt to Russia“immediately.”
According to Oettinger, Kiev will be able to pay back $3.1 billion of its gas debts before the end of the year. However, he added that the final figure will depend on the decision of the international Stockholm court of arbitration on the gas debt dispute.
Ukraine will get the money it is lacking with the help of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Union, the EC official announced. Oettinger expects that the promised financial assistance from the IMF and the EU will be used by Kiev to pay for Russian gas.
“The advantage for Ukraine is that it confirms the role of a reliable partner in the center of Europe and IMF and EU’s programs of assistance would be used correctly to pay its gas debts,” Oettinger stressed.
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