Rates will rise: the conflict “Gazprom” and “Naftogaz” is going to hurt the Russians

“Gazprom” started the the termination of all contracts for the supply and transit of “blue fuel” with “Naftogaz”, the Ukrainian partner notifying. This was stated by the head of the Russian company Alexey Miller. To the rupture of agreements between countries “Gazprom” has prompted the decision of the Stockholm arbitration on contracts for the supply and transit of gas, which rendered “uneconomic and disadvantageous” for Russia, the solution, said Miller. The number of victims of the gas conflict may be not only Ukrainian consumers (where the government has already introduced a regime of gas savings), but also the citizens of Russia. Analysts believe, if “Gazprom” will lose to arrive, we can expect increase of tariffs inside the country.

photo: Natalia Gubernatorova

“Gazprom” has begun procedure of dissolution of the contract with “Naftogaz”. The gas conflict between Russia and Ukraine could hit the sovereign rating of Russia, said the Director of analytical Department of “Alpari” Alexander Razuvaev. According to experts, the refusal of the Russian monopoly from the Ukrainian gas transit with high probability will lead to reduced export revenues and, as a consequence, the fall in budget revenues. “But taxes and export duties, we are talking about dividends on the state share in the equity of the gas holding company”, — he stressed. The probability of downgrade to “junk” level by international rating agencies S&P and Fitch, from the point of view Razuvaev, not very high. However, Moody’s could postpone the raising of Russia’s sovereign rating to investment grade. “However, credit ratings of “Gazprom” more vulnerable than the sovereign ratings of Russia, — said the analyst. — A Russian company might lobby for higher tariffs in the domestic market in order to compensate for financial losses in Europe.” In turn, this perspective will surely lead to higher gas prices, which will negatively affect the economic growth in Russia, and is unlikely to please ordinary Russians.

Ukrainian consumers also appear among the possible victims. “The price of gas will grow, and grow significantly, because “Naftogaz” has already pursued a policy of “sovereignty”, but some weird – purchasing gas in Europe, mainly in Slovakia and Poland, on the reverse, basically this is the same Russian gas, but four times more expensive, than at “Gazprom” — emphasizes the Deputy Director of analytical Department of “Alpari” Natalia Milchakova. — There will be significant social consequences in the form of the return of the country to higher unemployment, which in 2017, only a little decline, rising inflation and increasing income gap of the rich and the poor.”

In conversation with “MK” the expert pointed out that, due to the termination of contracts with the Ukrainian company, gas supplies to Europe will not be interrupted, as Russia has the possibilities of alternative routes. First of all, this “Northern stream”, which can be fully loaded, and also the gas pipeline “Yamal-Europe” through Belarus and Poland.

“This situation will push the EU to accelerate the adoption of decisions on the construction of new gas pipelines “Nord stream-2” and “Turkish stream” — continued Milchakova. — If these two gas pipelines will be built, the question of the transit of Ukrainian gas transportation system (GTS) will be solved completely and forever: Ukraine’s GTS will cease to have importance for Gazprom and for Europe”.

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