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Moldova proposes payment of $9M out of $700M Gazprom debt amid dispute

Maia Sandu Moldova
BM. GE
27.10.23 22:00
61

Moldova's president said on Friday that the republic is prepared to repay Gazprom only $9 million out of a debt exceeding $700 million.

"It's Gazprom's problem that they didn't recognize (results of audit). We have evidence the audit was conducted by well-known companies in this area. Moldovagaz can pay Gazprom $9 million, not $700 million," Maya Sandu told a local TV station.

Earlier Chisinau agreed to pay compensation for "deviations from the tariff" of $153.57 million and waive claims for lack of supplies since October 2022 (about $160 million).

In 2021 Russian energy company Gazprom asked Moldova to settle debts for previously delivered gas, a condition for the extension of the contract for further deliveries.

Referring to the results of the audit conducted by the Norwegian Wikborg Rein Advokatfirma AS and the British Forensic Risk Alliance, Moldova recognized only $8.6 million of the $709 million owed to Gazprom, saying $276 million "are not documented," the term for paying $400 million "has expired."

Moldovan authorities had also asked to "forgive" the debt "in difficult economic period" and fines for late payments.

Gazprom did not recognize the results of the audit because it was carried out by companies that cannot be considered "independent," "unilaterally," without cooperation with Gazprom, and therefore cannot affect the validity of the debt.

The Russian company does not agree with the statements of the Moldovan side on the debt for the supplied gas and will defend its rights, Gazprom said, AA reports.

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