Gazprom puts Ukrainian gas bill at $29.5bn as Russia piles pressure on Naftogaz

Gazprom Chairman Alexei Miller

Ukrainian gas bill: Gazprom  CEO Alexei Miller yesterday claimed that Ukraine owed his company as much as $29.5bn as Russia countered attempts by Naftogaz to recoup more than $16bn from its Russian supplier in Stockholm’s arbitration courts.  While Kiev is challenging the price it has been charged for Russian gas  and therefore the billions of dollars in debts which Russia claims it has accrued,  Miller says Naftogaz owes over $25bn for fines incurred under “take or pay” clauses and a further $2.6bn for gas deliveries in 2013 and 2014.
The dispute is being played out with increasing urgency as Ukraine races to guarantee its energy supplies for next winter. It is also a significant issue for the EU,  which relies on the Ukraine gas pipeline network to supply it with 40% of all the gas it buys from Russia.  “Ukraine is already pumping gas and storing gas for the next autumn/winter period at a speed and in volumes … that  will not guarantee that it [and other European countries]  will be able to make it through a cold winter” Miller said.