Moldova likely to buy cheaper Russian gas in 2013

The price of the natural gas Moldova imports from Russia, could decrease in the first quarter of 2013 by 5 dollars, and by another 20 dollars by late 2013, First Deputy Prime Minister, Economics Minister Valeriu Lazar said during a TV show.

The Russian concern Gazprom presented the Moldovan-Russsian joint venture Moldovagaz the draft of the agreement on prolonging the gas supply contract. According to the document, which is being discussed, Moldova could benefit from a discount for the gas price in the first quarter of 2013. «We need time for negotiations, but we may say that the price will decrease by 5 dollars in the first quarter of the year and by 20 dollars by late 2013. There are many influencing factors, yet we hope the price will be smaller,» Lazar said.

Lazar said he will meet Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak in Moscow on 14 December, to hold a new round of talks on signing a new gas supply contract.

Moldova is currently paying 391 dollars for a thousand cubic meters of Russian gas.

Moldovan Prime Minister Vlad Filat said recently that the old contract, which expired on 31 December 2011 and was prolonged until 31 December 2013, will be extended for 2013 as well. According to Filat, the Moldovan and Russian sides agreed to prolong the old contract by one more year. He said Moldova does not have enough time to negotiate on a new gas supply agreement by late 2012.

Kiev has recently announced that it will pay 417 dollars for a thousand of cubic meters of Russian gas in 2013, against the 430-dollar-price that it is currently paying.

Adapted from Moldpres