Russia’s Gazprom and Moldova sign 5-year gas deal

The logo of Russian gas giant Gazprom is seen on a board at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), Russia, June 6, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW, Oct 30 (Reuters) – Russia’s natural gas giant Gazprom and the Moldovan government said on Fridaythey had signed a new five-year contract for Russian gas supplies.

“Gazprom and MoldovaGaz have extended a contract for Russian gas supplies for five years, starting from Nov. 1, 2021 on mutually beneficial terms,” Gazprom said in a statement.

A breakthrough at the talks came after the previous gas contract expired at the end of September and the European Union accused Russia of using gas to bully the small, former Soviet republic.

Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Spinu said on Saturday Moldova would pay around $450 per 1,000 cubic metres of Russian gas in November.

“The price will decline going forward depending on the gas price on the exchanges. In current conditions we will pay half the market price and less than what we paid in October,” Spinu wrote on his Facebook page. He said Gazprom had accepted a price formula proposed by the Moldovan side.

The price that Moldova will pay in November is higher than the $128.5 paid by Belarus, but much lower than the current price at European hubs.

One of the key questions surrounding the negotiations that yielded the new deal was Moldova’s debt for previous gas supplies, estimated by Russia at around $709 million.

Spinu said the Moldovan government and Gazprom had agreed to audit the debt next year and to negotiate a payment schedule.

Additional reporting by Alexander Tanas in Chisinau; writing by Maria Tsvetkova and Maria Kiselyova;
editing by Mark Heinrich

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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