Russia’s Demand to Kiev to Settle Gas Debt Not Related to Politics
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said Moscow’s demand to Ukraine to settle the gas debts has no connection to the political processes in the country.
Russia’s demand to settle the overdue payments “is not at all connected to the elections in Ukraine on May 25,” Putin said, cited by Itar-Tass.
In case Ukraine does not make due payments, Russia shall start charging Kiev according to the initial price formula which is USD 485 per 1,000 cubic meters, President Putin said. He added that Russia would give Ukraine a month to pay off its gas debts, but would then switch to a complicated pre-payment scheme.
“We do not want to undermine the Ukrainian economy, or to cast doubt on the reliability of the gas transit to Europe,” Putin said, as cited by Itar-Tass.
“Thus, we are calling on all European countries, all the countries interested in supporting the Ukrainian economy, to get involved in the process of assisting Ukraine and offering measures aimed at financing the budget,” he continued.
In an interview for Russian Vesti TV program on Saturday, Russian President said that there was nothing preventing Russia and the West from improving their relations and cooperation.
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Well, my gas supplier says the same to me: pay your bill or we will switch your gas off. Needless to say, unlike Ukraine's, my gas debt is only a few pounds not billions of dollars. Gas is a commodity and should be paid for. In this world, free cheese is only in a mouse-trap.