Belarus will pay for Russian gas about 30% less — Kommersant

The authorities of Belarus and Russia have agreed on a new pricing formula for Russian gas.

The news came from the Russian newspaper “Kommersant” citing sources familiar with the discussion process.

According to the source, the payment scheme was adopted after several meetings between representatives of ministries and deputy prime ministers of the two countries. From the beginning of 2017 the price will be determined based on the average price of a unified system of Russian gas supply multiplied by the multiplying factor. The coefficient will gradually fall, and by 2025 the gas price for Belarus will be equal to the price for Russian consumers.

By this scheme, the price of Russian gas for Minsk in the coming year will be 30% less than that of the current one — from $132 per thousand cubic meters to about $100. Starting from 2017, 1,000 cubic meters of gas will cost Minsk about RUR 6,000 ($92.41). By the end of 2016, the price will be set at Ru 6,300 ($97.03) per thousand cubic meters.

According to the publication, the new scheme assumes that the gas price for Belarus will be calculated in rubles. This method of calculation will reduce the risks for Belarus which appear in the background of the dollar fluctuations.

As long as not resolved the issue, the new formula will be used at what point. Russia wants to introduce her on August 1, Belarus – 1 July. The source notes that the scheme agreed at the working level and it should be approved at the highest level.

If new terms are approved, Belarus will repay the debt to “Gazprom”, including penalties, at the old price, and Russia will fully restore the supply of oil to the country frozen during the conflict. The amount of debt for gas for the six months’ period is currently about $300 million.

The oil and gas conflict between Russia and Belarus began with the Minsk considering a fair price for Russian gas at $73 per 1,000 cubic meters. Russia has insisted on the implementation of the contract for the period of 2015-2016. Under this contract the agreed price formula for Belarus is $132 per 1,000 cubic meters.

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