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Turkmenistan Cuts Gas Shipments To Ukraine, Russia

2 January 2005 -- Turkmenistan has carried out its threat to cut off gas shipments to Ukraine and Russian, but has maintained the supplies will be renewed quickly if both countries agree to pay the higher prices Turkmenistan has set.

The Turkmen Foreign Ministry released a statement yesterday saying gas exports to Ukraine and Russia had been suspended as of midnight.

The statement said negotiations were underway with officials from both the affected countries and would continue for the next several days.

Turkmenistan announced in early December it sought a new price of $60 per 1,000 cubic meters for its gas. The price had been $44 per 1,000 cubic meters.

Officials in Russia and Ukraine have confirmed the negotiations on the price of Turkmen gas have started, but have also noted that their countries have signed long-term agreements with Turkmenistan for the gas that set the price at $44 per 1,000 cubic meters.