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Moldova expects to buy Russian natural gas at $190 per 1,000
Moldova expects to buy Russian natural gas at $190 per 1,000 cubic meters next year, Moldovan Prime Minister Vasile Tarlev said on Tuesday.

"As far as I know, the natural gas supplier Gazprom has already informed Moldova Gaz Co. about this," Tarlev said, adding that the exact price would be determined after January 20, 2008.

He said that under a contract between Gazprom and Moldova-Gaz, the 2007 gas price was fixed at $170 per 1,000 cubic meters.

"As for specific prices for local consumers, they will be published and made known as soon as the National Agency for Energy Regulation approves them," the Moldovan premier said.

Gazprom has refused to comment on changes in 2008 natural gas prices for Moldova.

"We are not supposed to provide an official comment," a Gazprom spokesman said.

Late last year Gazprom and Moldova agreed on a gradual price hike with a view to switching by 2011 to the average price of $250 Europe pays for 1,000 cubic meters of Russian natural gas.

Belarus remains the only former Soviet republic to pay a heavily discounted price for Russian gas supplies, even after Moscow raised the price to $100 per 1,000 cubic meters on January 1, 2007, from $46.7 last year.

Earlier this month, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the price of Russian natural gas for Belarus would remain unchanged in 2008.


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