Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov (right) with his Ukrainian counterpart, Viktor Yushchenko (file photo) (epa)
March 19, 2006 -- Turkmenistan has accused Ukraine of failing to pay off its debt for natural-gas deliveries, warning the matter would jeopardize future cooperation.
The Turkmen Foreign Ministry said today that a Ukrainian delegation that had been expected to sign an agreement on debt settlement had postponed its visit.
Last week, Turkmenistan said Ukraine had paid $60 million of its $160 million gas debt, but today the ministry said Ukraine had not yet paid anything. Turkmenistan says Ukraine owes money for gas delivered in 2005.
There was no immediate response from Ukraine.
Turkmenistan is the second-biggest gas producer in the former Soviet Union after Russia and is Ukraine's main gas supplier.