"Stockholm court will determine who will be paying, what for and what amount exactly. If they shall pay us - this is one thing, if we shall, then this is a completely different situation," Vitrenko said.
According to him, Naftohaz’s future in terms of payments for gas supplies will depend on this decision. Stockholm arbitration is likely to announce its decision in the afternoon.
"This usually takes place at noon, but we'll see," Vitrenko said.
As reported by the Foreign Brief, the court will decide on a claim of some $16 billion put forward by Ukraine’s Naftohaz, which argues that Gazprom underpaid it for its role in transporting Russian petrol to Europe.
It is unclear how the court will rule on today’s case, although the dispute will have far-reaching effects on Russia-Ukraine relations and the transit of Russian petrol to Europe. Indeed, Russia has traditionally used its gas exports as a means of leverage over Ukraine; however, in response to their 2014 breakdown in relations, Kyiv has virtually halted petrol imports from Russia, instead purchasing it at a markup from Gazprom’s other customers in Eastern Europe.
Having lost a key means of pressuring its neighbour, Russia may seek to punish Ukraine by using the Nordstream2 pipeline to export petrol to Europe, thereby bypassing Kyiv and robbing it of lucrative transit fees.