Alexey Gromov, Principal Director on Energy Studies of the Institute for Energy and Finance, commented to the Vzglyad business newspaper on the proposed Russian scheme for transferring gas payments to rubles from the so-called unfriendly countries.
Firstly, the expert points out, there is no need to change the currency of payment in commercial contracts, which is a significant change in the contract. Gazprom's counterparties both paid in euros or dollars and will continue to pay for gas. It will only be necessary to make a minor adjustment with a change in the intermediary bank through which the payment will be made. Such changes would have to be made, for example, if the intermediary went bankrupt.
“I consider the new settlement procedure to be an elegant solution, which is a compromise,” Alexey Gromov says.
The second important change concerns the Russian side. “According to the current scheme, Gazprom receives currency for the sold gas. It is obliged not to sell 80% of foreign exchange earnings on the interbank exchange, but to hand over to the state. Now it will sell 100% of foreign exchange earnings through Gazprombank and the Interbank Currency Exchange,” Gromov says. At the same time, transaction costs in the transfer of one currency to another will fall on the shoulders of Russia.
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