Naftogaz of Ukraine intends to increase the amount of claim in a lawsuit against Russian Gazprom over natural gas transit costs by $5 billion, as indicated by their Commercial Director Yuri Vitrenko on Ukrainian Channel 5.
“We are seeking a judgement in our favor regarding the transit contract. We are claiming more than $13 billion, and we will sue for an additional $5 billion as well,” Vitrenko promised, noting that Gazprom's claims amount to $7 billion. “We expect that we will receive fair compensation from Gazprom based on our claims,” he added.
Naftogaz explained that it filed the claim against Gazprom due to fears that Gazprom will not use the GTS (Gas Transmission System) after 2020 and Ukraine will lose $16 billion as a result. “Since Gazprom reported that they would not use the Ukrainian GTS, we cannot expect gas transit after 2020,” Vitrenko noted. He explained that as a result, "this $16 billion, which we would receive later, must be paid now according to European principles."
At the same time, Vitrenko believes that the judgment on the dispute with the Russian company by the Stockholm arbitration court is expected in late November.
In addition, Vitrenko said that the company did not rule out the future purchase of gas from Russia in the event of a critical situation during the heating season.
“This year, taking into account a favourable results from Stockholm (the preliminary judgment of the Stockholm Arbitration in the suit against Russia under the gas contract), we can, in fact, still purchase Russian natural gas. This is a separate issue, if we take it or not, but in certain [critical] cases, we can buy gas from Russia,” he said.
Proceedings on the case between Gazprom and Naftogaz in the Stockholm Arbitration Court began in 2014. The companies have filed lawsuits against each other over their contracts for gas supplies and its transit through Ukraine since 2009.
Currently, the parties are negotiating the amounts of their mutual claims. If negotiations are not successful, then the final decision will be made by the Arbitration Court.