Belarus finds solution to the gas conflict with Russia

Belarusian authorities have come to a solution on the gas conflict with Russia, the country's Minister of Energy Vladimir Potupchik reported.

According to him, now everything depends on the agreement of these terms at a “high level” and through “political decisions,” reports news agency BELTA.

“Everything that was done in this part was released to the public by Belarusian Deputy Prime Minister Vladimir Semashko and Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich,” said Potupchik.

He also spoke about the need to fulfill all points of the agreement about the Eurasian Economic Union. To do this, by July 1, 2019 it will be necessary to create a common electricity market and by December 1, 2025, a common gas market. To achieve this goal its necessary to completely pull together the price of gas and this is exactly what Minsk has been doing, the official added.

Earlier, Russian Minister of Energy Alexander Novak said that Minsk was obliged to pay its debt for delivery of Russian gas in 2016. Belarus owes Russia $500 mln USD, as stated by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich.

From the beginning of 2016, Belarus has been conducting negotiations with Russia over lowering the price of gas. Belarus insisted on equal profitability with Russian gas exports and wanted to pay $73 USD per 1,000 per cubic meter instead of $132 USD. In response to the Belarusian underpayment of nearly $300 mln USD for gas deliveries Russia reduced the supply of duty free oil to the republic by more than a third.

At the end of last year Belarus transferred an advance payment for gas to Russia and expressed its hope for the restoration of the previous volume of oil supply. However, Dvorkovich then stated that Russia had returned the advance payment and insisted on the full execution of the gas contract. The case is still in court.

  Belarus, Russia, gas conflict