Naftogaz Ukrainy has rejected the $10.54 million received from Russian Gazprom in July as a supplementary payment for transit of Russian gas through Ukraine and has returned the money, Naftogaz said in a statement.
"The situation that has taken shape stems from the different interpretations between the companies concerning the definition of the rate for transit of Ukraine. Gazprom previously made an advance payment for transit services. The formula for calculating the transit fee incorporates the gas price delivered by the Russian company to Ukraine. According to Naftogaz calculations, the advance payment has not been entirely drawn down yet," the statement says.
Gazprom delivered gas to Ukraine in the first quarter of 2014 for $268.5 per 1,000 cubic meters. However, due to nonpayment by Ukraine, the discounts were canceled, raising the price to $485.5 per 1,000 cubic meters. That is the price Gazprom has used in calculating the total indebtedness of $5.3 billion it is trying to collect from Ukraine in Stockholm arbitration.
Based on the price of gas one year ago (over $410 per 1,000 cubic meters), the advance payment was sufficient to cover transit charges until the beginning of 2015; based on a price of $485.5 per 1,000 cubic meters, it would run out in July 2014.
In other words, Naftogaz believes Gazprom's transit payment amounts to bait aimed at winning acknowledgment from Ukraine that the gas price is $485.5.
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