CHISINAU, 8 Sep – PRIME. Negotiations on the accumulated issues with the management of Gazprom will take place next week, Vadim Cheban, head of the Moldovagaz company, said on Chisinau radio Vocea Basarabiei.
“We will discuss the situation both with the audit of the company and with tariffs. For the population a year ago, in September, a cubic meter of gas cost 4.2 lei (about $0.20). Now we pay 23 lei (about $1.2) with a tax on added value,” he said.
Previously, Gazprom said that the historical debt of Moldovagaz is $440 million, together with penalties, this amount has grown to $700 million. Chisinau does not agree with this amount and intends to conduct an audit. Last week, Deputy Prime Minister of Moldova Andrei Spinu said that the government would not have time to complete the audit of the debt of the Moldovagaz gas distribution company to Gazprom by October 1, he asked the Russian side for a delay until the end of March 2023.
“Now the price of Russian gas for Moldova is calculated according to a special formula linked to the cost of energy resources on world exchanges. Under these conditions, we were already on the verge of shutting down three times due to the fact that we could not pay for the volume already received within the terms specified in the contract. By the end of the year Moldova’s current debt to Gazprom could grow to 3.3 billion lei ($173 million),” Cheban said.
According to him, the continuation of gas supplies to Moldova in the current difficult conditions remains at the discretion of the Russian side. Cheban expressed hope that if the supplies continue, then in October the gas price should decrease. “Because it will be calculated according to the formula for the winter period,” Cheban explained.
“Gazprom” and “Moldovagaz” at the end of October last year, after lengthy negotiations, extended the contract for the supply of gas for a period of five years starting from November 1. “Gazprom” said that, taking into account the situation in Moldova, it was decided to sign the contract practically on the terms of the Moldovan side, but subject to timely 100% payment of current payments. Due to the global energy crisis, the cost of gas, and then heat and electricity, is constantly growing, so tariffs have already been revised upwards several times in Moldova.