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Prodan: Ukraine, Russia Disagree on Gas Payment Schedule, Final Deal Still on Table

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Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan said Friday Kiev and Moscow continue to disagree on some gas supplies issues, including a debt payment schedule.

Updated 08:19 p.m. Moscow Time

BERLIN, September 26 (RIA Novosti) - Ukrainian Energy Minister Yuriy Prodan said Friday Kiev and Moscow continue to disagree on some gas supplies issues, including a debt payment schedule.

"Kiev has proposed to make payments in several tranches, but the Russian side, unfortunately, has rejected this offer," Prodan told reporters following EU-Russia-Ukraine trilateral gas talks on energy security in Berlin.

According to Prodan, Ukraine could make a pre-payment for supplies of 5 billion cubic meters in the amount of $1.9 billion and pay another $1.5 billion after the delivery by October 25.

"Further payments will cover the debt - $800 million by the end of November and another $800 million by the end of December," Prodan said.

At the same time, Ukraine will review by next Tuesday the schedule proposed by EU and agreed by Russia, which envisions the payment of $2 billion by the end of October and an additional payment of $1.1 billion by the end of 2014, the minister said.

Prodan also said Kiev was ready to consider $385 per 1,000 cubic meters as part of a temporary "winter package" proposal developed during the talks in Berlin, although the Ukrainian side insists on a fair price for Russian gas supplies at $268.

Ukraine's debt for Russian gas supplies currently stands at $5.3 billion, according to Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak who represented Russia at Friday talks.

Prodan confirmed that Russia will not compromise on this matter and will only accept either a payment of Kiev's debt in full, or a proposed sum of $2 billion before supplying 5 billion cubic meters of gas to Ukraine.

Russia is expected to hold direct talks with Ukraine on the issue of gas supplies next week, where sides might reach a consensus.

In June, Russia's gas giant Gazprom introduced a prepayment system for gas deliveries to Ukraine due to Kiev's massive debt.

The European Union has repeatedly highlighted the importance of trilateral talks over the gas issue, fearing of potential troubles with gas transit via Ukraine.

Tags:
gas, payments, EU, Yuriy Prodan
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