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EU: Gazprom and EC agree to settle antitrust dispute

 |  October 26, 2016

Russia’s PAO Gazprom and the European Union’s competition watchdog on Wednesday announced they will attempt to settle a longstanding antitrust case and that the state-controlled energy company would soon submit concrete commitments to change behaviors in exchange for escaping a hefty fine.

If successful, a settlement would conclude one of the EU’s most politically sensitive competition cases that has been complicated by the growing tensions between Moscow and Brussels over the conflict in Ukraine and Russia’s bombing campaign in Syria.

“We are now putting the final touch to our commitment proposal. It will be sent to the European Commission shortly,” Alexander Medvedev, Gazprom’s deputy chairman, said following a meeting with the EU’s competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager. Two people familiar with the negotiations said that nailing down the outstanding details for a preliminary settlement agreement might still take “a couple of weeks.”

In essence, we have a deal,” one of those people said.

Ms. Vestager said that she and Mr. Medvedev had discussed concrete stepsthrough which Gazprom could address the EU’s concerns, such as allowing customers to resell gas to other countries and putting prices in Central and Eastern European gas markets in line with those charged elsewhere.

Full Content: The Wall Street Journal

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