Ukraine Says It Will Not Pay Gazprom $7 Billion Gas Fine

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has said his country will not pay the $7 billion fine that Russia’s Gazprom is demanding for gas Ukraine did not use in 2012.

Yanukovych said on February 22 that “we refuse to pay this fine.”

Gazprom announced the fine last month, saying that Ukraine had not used some 8 billion cubic meters of gas.

Gazprom cited the so-called “take-or-pay” deal that obligates the consumer to fully pay for contracted gas.

Yanukovych called the contract “unfair” and said the fine was more than the cost of the unused gas.

Gazprom insists the “take-or-pay” contracts are standard, but Russia’s ambassador to Azerbaijan said in January that Gazprom would not pay for unused Azerbaijani gas it signed a contract for in 2012, a practice he described as “normal commerce.”

Based on reporting by ITAR-TASS and Interfax

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