World Bulletin/News Desk
Ukraine must repay part of its $5.3 billion of debt to Russia before it can buy more gas, Russia's Energy Minister has said.
Alexandr Novak said on Monday that a downpayment and some repayments from Kiev were necessary before Ukraine could purchase natural gas that it was requesting.
Novak said: "Ukraine demanded four billion cubic meters of natural gas - the provisions for its transportation are a downpayment and the repayment of the debt."
He said that Kiev was seeking to pay its gas debt on March next year, with $1.45 billion in advance and the rest through equal installments.
Russia expects Ukraine to pay $3.1 billion, which it said was agreed with Ukraine and the EU in a meeting on September 26.
The agreement stated that Ukraine would pay $2 billion of its debt before any gas flow could begin, and $1.1 billion would be paid by the end of 2014.
Novak said Russia would offer some flexibility in payment by allowing Ukraine to repay part its debt by the end of the year.
He said earlier this month that Russia was waiting for a written protocol between Ukraine and the EU involving recommendations that had been prepared with the European Commission, which were currently being assessed by the Kiev administration.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 13 Ekim 2014, 22:05