Good news for the cold-showering, snow-covered Ukrainians... Russia has reached an interim agreement to supply natural gas to Ukraine through March according to Bloomberg. Of course, this will be paid for by more IMF loans (thank you US Taxpayer), pushing Ukraine further into debt and more dependent upon the West.
- *RUSSIA CONFIRMS GAS SUPPLY RESUMPTION TERMS AGREED WITH UKRAINE
- *GAZPROM, NAFTOGAZ CEOS SIGN AMENDMENT TO CONTRACT
- *RUSSIA, UKRAINE, EU AGREEMENT TO COVER DELIVERY THROUGH MARCH
- *OETTINGER: RUSSIA TO CHARGE UKRAINE $385/KCM THROUGH MARCH
- *UKRAINE READY TO IMMEDIATELY PAY $1.45B OF GAS DEBT: OETTINGER
- *NAFTOGAZ TO PAY $1.6B AS 2ND GAS DEBT INSTALLMENT BY YEAR-END
Paid for by US taxpayers...
- *UKRAINE TO USE EU, IMF AID TO PAY FOR RUSSIAN GAS: OETTINGER
As Bloomberg reports,
Ukraine and Russia reached an interim natural-gas supply deal in talks brokered by the European Union to secure flows before the heating season, a Russian Energy Ministry spokeswoman said.
The accord agreed by Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak, his Ukrainian counterpart, Yuri Prodan, and EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger will enable resumption of deliveries of gas from Russia to Ukraine after they were halted in June in a pricing and debt conflict.
Russian Energy Ministry spokeswoman Olga Golant, speaking by phone, confirmed the agreement.
The 28-nation EU was seeking to avoid a repeat of 2006 and 2009, when disputes between the former Soviet republics over gas debts and prices led to fuel transit disruptions and shortages across Europe amid freezing temperatures.
Moscow and Kiev have clinched a deal that will guarantee that Russian gas exports flows into Ukraine throughout the winter despite their intense rivalry over the fighting in eastern Ukraine.
In Thursday's signing ceremony following protracted negotiations, the two sides promised to get the gas flowing into Ukraine again after a long and bitter dispute over payments.
EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso announced the "very important agreement" between the two sides.
Talks to guarantee that Russian gas imports flow into Ukraine throughout the winter appeared to be at an impasse Thursday because of doubts over payments from Kiev.
A European Union official says the negotiations, which were supposed to produce an agreement Wednesday, broke up inconclusively early Thursday, with a draft for a 'common understanding' sent to Moscow and Kiev for consideration. The official asked not to be named because an agreement had yet to be reached.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said the amount his government would pay for Russian gas would fall in line with global oil prices, which have tumbled in recent weeks.
Yatsenyuk said at a Cabinet meeting in Kiev that Ukraine could pay $365 per 1,000 cubic meters from the start of next year, down from the $385 rate agreed earlier this month. He said that figure may be adjusted downward to $378 until the end of the year.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart, Petro Poroshenko, agreed earlier this month on the broad outline of a deal, but financial issues, centering on payment guarantees for Moscow, have since bogged down talks.
The EU has said previously that Ukraine would settle its energy debt to Russia with a $1.45 billion payment by the end of the month and $1.65 billion more by the end of the year. It has said for new gas deliveries, Ukraine would pay $385 per 1,000 cubic meters, which Russia should deliver following advance payments by Ukraine.
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