: :inin Kyiv (EET)

TASS: Russia offers no gas discount to Belarus


Russia`s Energy Minister Alexander Novak says a discount on the price of gas for Belarus is not being considered, and the price will be determined within the existing contract, according to Russian news agency TASS.
”Our position is that the contract was signed, which is valid for 2015-2016. The contract includes a formula, which is a part of the current agreement. This contract has not been canceled, the Belarusian side paid according to that contract in 2015 and must pay in 2016,” Novak told reporters, TASS reported.
According to calculations by the Belarusian authorities, the price of gas for the country must be reduced by almost half – to $73 – due to the weakening of the ruble against the dollar, the BBC Russian News Service reported.
”With regard to natural gas, in early 2014 it was priced at $165 per 1,000 cubic meters [under the existing contract]. It was when the exchange rate was at RUB 32-33 per dollar. On January 1, 2015, the price of gas for us was set at $142. While, the exchange rate was more than RUB 60 per dollar. Logically, the price of gas should be around $80, and we have $142,” Belarusian Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov was quoted as saying in early April.
A month later, Belarus` Energy Minister Vladimir Potupchik said his country considered $73 per 1,000 cubic meters to be a fair price for the Russian gas.
The Russian side claimed that Belarus` debt to Gazprom for gas supplies has reached over $125 million since the beginning of the year. The Belarusian authorities do not recognize the debt, referring to own calculations of the price.

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