Moldova Nears Russian Gas Deal
Moldovan gas company Moldovagaz has agreed in principle to extend its supply contract with Russia’s Gazprom for another three years, the company announced late on November 11. It was due to expire at the end of the year. Moldovan officials were scheduled to meet with transportation partners in Romania and Ukraine on November 12 to discuss how the gas would arrive.
Moldovagaz said it was prepared to take 12.4mn m3/day of Russian gas, or 4.526bn m3/yr, after joint preparations with Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine had been carried out. It noted that “the Romanian and Ukrainian sides have already officially completed all of the works.”
It said that the contract offers three delivery points: at the border with the Russian federation and Ukraine; at the border with Romania and Ukraine through the trans-Balkan corridor; or at the western Ukrainian border with EU countries. Moldovagaz, which is majority controlled by Gazprom, said the two sides had “reached an agreement and are ready to sign, as soon as possible, the annexes to the supply agreement.”
The current supply contract expires at the end of December. Moldova's president Igor Dodon has had negotiations over the past half a year with Gazprom officials and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, with pricing apparently a sticking point. Moldovagaz's statement did not specify what price it would pay for supplies next year.
Moldova now receives all its Russian gas via Ukraine. But Gazprom’s long-term transit deal with Ukraine also terminates at the end of 2019 and despite several rounds of EU-brokered talks, the two countries have so far failed to agree on a new one.