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Vladimir Putin urges Gazprom not to use gas prices as a means of pressure on its Kiev partners

Moscow will not use gas prices as a means of pressure on Kiev, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller on Wednesday.

Putin asked Miller to inform him of the gas supplies to Ukraine and supported his initiative to further exempt the Ukrainians from fines for not taking the gas they should take according to the contract.

Miller said that on Apr 1 Gazprom fixed a new price for Ukraine - $247.18 per 1,000 c m, this including the discount provided by the Russian government at the cost of the customs duty.

“This discount will be valid for three months even though Ukraine asked for a longer respite. Today the gas market is highly volatile. We know that the tendencies observed on the oil market may turn things around and may push prices even lower,” Miller said.

“We want our partners to be confident of our intentions,” Putin said. “We also want to show them that we will not use our economic ties as a means to solve other problems. But in any case you should comply with the contract of 2009, As far as the discount is concerned, we should use it to make our price for Ukraine comparable to the regional prices, that is, the prices charged from Ukraine’s neighbors,” the Russian president said.

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