SERVICES

Gazprom says Ukraine will owe $5.2 billion as of June 7

Moscow - Ukraine will owe Russia about $5.2 billion for natural gas as of June 7 if it makes no payments by that date

Moscow - Ukraine will owe Russia about $5.2 billion for natural gas as of June 7 if it makes no payments by that date, the CEO of state-controlled Russian gas exporter Gazprom, Alexei Miller, said on Wednesday. Gazprom says Ukraine now owes more than $3.5 billion, and has threatened to stop supplying the neighbouring former Soviet republic with gas if it fails to make a pre-payment for June supplies by June 2. Miller told President Vladimir Putin that Ukraine would consume a total of 3.5 billion cubic metres of Russian gas in May worth around $1.7 billion, increasing Kiev’s gas debt.

“Thus, by June 7, Ukraine’s obligations for gas payments will top $5.2 billion,” Miller told Putin, repeating Gazprom’s position that it will supply as much gas as Ukraine pays for. Putin responded by saying he hoped “we will not reach a situation when we will have to switch to prepayment”. Russia and Ukraine are fighting over gas prices, with Kiev wanting to change a 2009 contract that locked it into buying a set volume of gas, whether it needs it or not, at $485 per 1,000 cubic metres - the highest price paid by any client in Europe. Moscow dropped the price to $268.50 after Ukraine’s then-President Viktor Yanukovich turned his back on a trade and association agreement with the European Union last year, but reinstated the original price after he was ousted in February

Pressed for time?

Get the best news of the week in your inbox

Subscribe ››