Apr 10 2019

Russia may give Turkey 10 percent gas price reduction – report

Russia may agree to a request by Turkey to reduce the price of natural gas by at least 10 percent, Diken news website reported.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made the request to his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at meetings in Moscow on Tuesday, Diken said.

The reduction would be the second in less that a year that Russia has awarded to Turkey. The two countries are seeking to strengthen their relations, built on cooperation in Syria, growing foreign trade and plans by Turkey to buy Russian S-400 air defence missiles.

Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller declined to comment on the alleged request by Erdoğan, when speaking to reporters in the Russian capital, Diken said.

Russia is considering the matter and the reduction in the price of the gas would not be less than 10 percent, according to one official who asked to remain anonymous.

Turkey imports nearly half of its natural gas from Russia. Iran is another major seller to the NATO member.

The price of natural gas in Turkey has surged following a currency crisis that peaked in August last year, helping to spur consumer price inflation to almost 20 percent. Manufacturers are paying almost 50 percent more for gas than they were before the crisis struck, while increases for consumers have been less, Diken said.

Russia last cut the price of natural gas for Turkey last May. It reduced the cost by 10.25 percent after Turkey went to an international court of arbitration. Russia paid Turkey $1 billion under the deal, which included gas bought in 2015 and 2016, Erdoğan said at the time.