Ukraine ready to drop case against Gazprom if compensation payment is guaranteed

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KIEV, January 9. /TASS/. Naftogaz of Ukraine is ready to withdraw a lawsuit against Gazprom from the Stockholm Arbitration in the gas transit tariff reconsideration case if the Russian side provides guarantees of compensation payment in the new long-term transit contract, chief executive of Naftogaz Andrei Kobolev said on Wednesday in an interview with Ukraine’s Channel 5.

“We tell our Russian colleagues: if you are building and want to transport – give compensation. If you want to transport and ready to sign a long-term contract under European rules, with guarantees that you will pay this money to us, we are ready to abandon the lawsuit,” Kobolev said. Reconsideration or change of the subject matter of the claim are among other options, he noted.

“We are ready for everything. We communicated this message to the European Commission and we were heard. We are ready to put this issue, if the shareholder endorses it for us, to the bargaining table with Gazprom. The goal is simple – to keep the transit over the territory of Ukraine,” Kobolev said.

On February 28, 2018, the Stockholm Arbitration court handed down a final decision on the dispute between Gazprom and Naftogaz regarding the contract on gas transit via Ukraine.

On March 29, 2018, Gazprom challenged the ruling of the Stockholm Arbitration in the Svea County Court of Appeal and demanded its partial reversal citing serious procedural violations. On May 28, 2018, Gazprom submitted an appeal to the court to fully overturn the arbitration ruling.

At the end of May, Gazprom was informed that Naftogaz of Ukraine was taking action in Switzerland to enforce the decision of the Stockholm Arbitration in the dispute over gas transit contract.

On June 7, Gazprom filed an appeal to the Swiss court a petition to the Swiss court, aimed at providing it with full access to case materials and subsequent appeal against actions of court bailiffs. A similar statement is planned to be sent to the Dutch court.

On June 5, Naftogaz of Ukraine said that the Dutch court had upheld its petition on seizure of Gazprom shares in its Dutch subsidiaries and the debt of those subsidiaries. According to Naftogaz, the petitions were filed to secure its right to receive from Gazprom $2.6 billion under the decision of the Stockholm Arbitration, adopted in February 2018.

Gazprom and Naftogaz of Ukraine plunged into a litigation over gas supplies and transit contracts with the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce back in 2014. Gazprom is demanding more than $37 bln from the Ukrainian company for gas under the take-or-pay clause for 2012-2016, for the payment for gas supplied in May-June 2014 and gas debts.

The two contracts signed in 2009 by Gazprom and Naftogaz on gas supplies to Ukraine and on gas transit through the country to Europe will expire at the turn of 2019.

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