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Gazprom ready to cut gas provision to Ukraine

de Radu Big
Vineri, 8 februarie 2008, 12:50 English | Regional Europe

Gazprom will celebrate its 15 anniversary with more than just a Deep Purple concert: "On February 11, Gazprom may cease its natural gas deliveries towards Ukraine", said the company spokesman, Sergey Kuprianov, who estimated the Ukrainian debt to 1.5 billion dollars.

The Russian - Ukrainian commission, led by the president of the two states, will gather on February 12, in order to discuss the relationship in the natural gas field.

On January 5, Ukrainian prime minister Iulia Timoshenko demanded the elimination from the market of RosUkrEnergo, the exclusive provider of Central-Asian natural gas, where Gazprom holds 50% of the stock. Timoshenko pleaded in favor of direct deliveries, emphasizing that RosUkrEnergo didn't sell any gas to Ukraine for the past 3 months and Naftogaz Ukrainy had to buy 4.7 billion cubic meters "from other sources".

In case Ukraine doesn't pay its debt until February 11, Gazprom will stop providing natural gas, Kuprianov concluded. A counselor of the Ukrainian prime minister confirms that the state didn't pay anything "because Gazprom wants the bills for November and December to be paid at the new price, valid in 2008, which is 50 dollars more than the price last year".

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