Introduction by Roger Annis, Oct 23, 2014
Two rounds of talks involving Russia, Ukraine and the European Union over the pricing and supply of natural gas to Ukraine this coming winter took place in Milan and Brussels on May 18 and 21, resp. In Milan, a price framework was announced in which Ukraine would pay $385 per 1,000 m3 of gas. That’s roughly an average price of Russian gas sold in Europe. There is no agreement announced from Brussels. The enclosed article from RIA Novosti news agency explains the background to Ukraine’s dispute with Russia over gas supply and pricing.
Latest news: Russia and Ukraine failed to reach an accord on gas supplies for the coming winter in EU-brokered talks on Oct 21 but agreed to meet again in Brussels in a week in the hope of ironing out problems over Kiev’s ability to pay.–Reuters, Oct 21, 2014
Some among Ukraine’s ruling elite are balking at signing an agreement at such a price. At the same time, the EU is pressuring Russia for a lower price because whatever agreement is reached, Ukraine’s financially bankrupt government will depend on EU loans and grants to pay the bills.
Ukraine has an unpaid bill to Russia for gas which it says is app. $3 billion and Russia says is app. $5 billion.
Ukraine-Russia gas crisis looms because Europe refuses to face reality
Alexander Mercouris, RIA Novosti, Oct 22, 2014
LONDON – Predictions of a written agreement in the Russia-Ukraine-EU gas dispute from the talks held on 21st October 2014 have so far failed to materialise. This was predictable because of the vast gulf of understanding that exists between the three parties. Though some temporary agreement may eventually emerge this gulf is so wide that it is likely to unravel quickly. » Read more..