Ukraine has agreed to transfer gas supplies to Gazprom (ITAR-TASS)
October 9, 2007 -- Russia's state-controlled Gazprom energy company today said it had reached a deal on settling Ukraine's debt for gas supplies.
Russian Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov said Ukraine will repay $1.2 billion by transferring gas from underground storage facilities in Ukraine owned by RosUkrEnergo to Gazprom for further export. He also said that remaining debt of $929 million is to be paid by Ukrainian energy suppliers UkrGazEnergo and Naftohaz Ukrayiny.
The deal was reached during a meeting between Zubkov and Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych.
Zubkov said that "the most efficient way to resolve economic problems is to do it at the level of business entities." He added that Russia hopes "the Ukrainian government ensures proper control over the implementation of the agreement."
Gazprom had earlier threatened to reduce its supplies to Ukraine unless the country's debts were paid by the end of October. That sparked fears of a repeat of the January 2006 gas crisis in which the Russian energy giant briefly shut off the flow of gas to Ukraine, in turn affecting European supplies.