Justice Ministry begins seizure of Gazprom's assets in Ukraine

Justice Ministry begins seizure of Gazprom's assets in Ukraine

The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine is intensifying its actions to recover fines from Russian gas monopoly Gazprom.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman gave the respective instruction to the Justice Ministry, according to the government portal.

"Ukraine's position in the situation with Gazprom must be strict and consistent. Gazprom must comply with the Stockholm Arbitration verdict and also comply with the requirements of the Ukrainian antimonopoly authority and the decisions of the Ukrainian courts. Today, we talked about our actions in this regard with Ukrainian Justice Minister Pavlo Petrenko," Groysman said on Wednesday, March 7.

He recalled that the formation of a package of claims by NJSC Naftogaz of Ukraine against Gazprom in the Stockholm court in 2014 had also resulted in a number of decisions of the antimonopoly bodies of the European Union and Ukraine on violation of the monopoly legislation. Therefore, in January 2016, the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine imposed a fine of almost UAH 86 billion on Gazprom for abuse of its monopoly position in Ukraine's natural gas market. The amount doubled in a year. Gazprom tried to challenge the decision of the Antimonopoly Committee, but the courts of all instances recognized the legality of Ukraine's claims.

The executive proceeding in this case is conducted by the Department of State Enforcement Service of the Ukrainian Justice Ministry on the basis of a court decision on the recovery of UAH 171.9 billion from Gazprom to the general fund of the state budget of Ukraine.

The seizure of assets belonging to Gazprom in Ukraine began in this case, Groysman said.

According to Groysman, "in the current situation, we must combine all our efforts to make Gazprom fulfill all its obligations. The Russian monopoly must bear strict responsibility for non-fulfillment of its obligations."

As reported, on February 28, the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce obliged Gazprom to pay NJSC Naftogaz $4.63 billion in compensation for the failure to meet its gas transit obligations. According to Naftogaz, this ruling means that Gazprom must pay Ukraine about $2.56 billion, taking into account the final payment for gas supplied in 2014 and 2015.

Gazprom, after the Stockholm arbitration issued a ruling not in its favor, launched the procedure for terminating contracts for the supply and transit of gas with Ukraine's Naftogaz.

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